What Islamophobia looks like for Western Muslims since the Paris attacks

Ruhi Rehman was racially harassed on the train
Ruhi Rehman was racially harassed on the train Credit: Paul Norris/ncjMedia Ltd

Islamophobia in the UK has soared since the terrorist attacks in Paris. According to the Tell Mama helpline, which compiles hate crimes against British Muslims, there has been a 300 per cent spike since November 13.

Many of these have been reported in the media. British Muslims have been publically harassed and assaulted - and the picture doesn't look much brighter across the Atlantic.

Most of the victims are women – partly due to the fact they’re more likely to wear traditional Muslim clothing such as hijabs and niqabs, and possibly because they’re less of a perceived threat than men.

Tell Mama said majority of the victims of UK hate crimes were girls and women aged 14 to 45, while the perpetrators were mainly white males aged between 15 and 35. Some of the crimes have been reported to the authorities, while others have been discussed on social media. Even Archbishop of Canterbury Justin Welby said he personally knew a victim.

The spike comes shortly after Isil’s barbarous attacks in Paris, but also in the same week that Channel 4 revealed a secret cell of British Muslim women encouraging others to join the Islamic State.

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Women were caught on camera telling young Muslims that Britain is waging war against them, and making anti-Semitic comments about “filthy Jews.”

Exposes such as this may also be linked to a rise in Islamophobia.

To show just what the current picture looks like, here are the most recent anti-Muslim hate crimes in the Western world:

‘This is my country’

Ruhi Rahman was travelling on the metro in Newcastle with her sister, on November 21, when a man came up to them and started shouting abuse.

He allegedly said “this is my country” and told other passengers that Rahman, who wears a headscarf, could “bomb the train.”

Rahman wrote about it on her Facebook page and made a video to thank her fellow passengers for intervening.

‘I’m going to burn your f****** temple’

Two sisters in New York, pushing a baby in a pram around a shop on November 20, were  reportedly harassed by post-office worker Dainton Coley. He  allegedly spat at them and threatened to burn down their mosque.

According to the Council on American-Islamic Relations, he allegedly used the n–word and called the women terrorists.

He has been charged with harassment and menacing.

‘Next time we’ll kill you’

A 17-year-old boy was reportedly assaulted in Cheltenham by attackers wielding golf clubs on November 23, at midnight. The boy, who is half-Turkish, said they shouted “terrorist” as they punched him, leaving him with injuries to his face.

He ran home to alert his father, who arrived on the scene with the boy’s uncle Mehmet. All three were then subjected to the racist abuse.

Mehmet told the Gloucestershire Echo: "They knocked them down, they hit them with metal. When I drove there they smashed my car. One of them jumped on a bike and ran away and people came. People came because of the noise and the screaming."

‘F****** p***’

A young woman in a hijab was a victim of alleged abuse on the London Underground. The incident was described on Facebook by commuter Ashley Powys, who reported pushing the man away from the woman on November 16.

He said a man in his 30s shouted abuse at the teenage girl and called her a “terrorist.”

Ashley Powys stood up for a woman being abused on the Tube Credit: Ashley Powys/Facebook

"After she looked at him and looked away, he went nearer to her and said, ‘f*****g p**i’, quite loudly,” he wrote. "He then got closer to her and was reeling off abuse... saying that ‘her people’ murdered the victims of the Paris attacks this weekend.

"Without thinking, I automatically stood up and had to physically push him away from her, as he was aggressively close and was clearly terrifying her. He then luckily turned his attention onto me, calling me a ‘terrorist sympathiser’, among other things."

‘Dirty s***, go back to your country’

A Muslim woman in Canada said she was viciously attacked on her way to pick up her six-year-old son from school by two men on November 16.

“One called me a terrorist, dirty s***. Go back to your country,” she told City News. “I said, this is my country.

“One guy grabbed my hijab and ripped it off my face. Punched me until I fell to the ground. Punching me and punching me in the stomach and head.”