World

Muslims being targeted through ‘fascist policies’, Pakistan tells the world

UNITED NATIONS: Foreign Minister Bilawal Bhutto-Zardari said Friday that Muslims across the world are being targeted through “new fascist policies” as he severely denounced Islamophobia at the United Nations.

The minister’s comments came as he opened a special high-level meeting to commemorate International Day to Combat Islamophobia, with a fervent call to everyone — from any religion or creed — to stand together in the fight against hatred, bigotry, and intolerance.

“Hatred’s being spread against Muslims under a well-thought-out strategy. Muslims are being targeted because of their religion,” the foreign minister stressed, as he noted that the purpose behind bringing matters like hijab into politics is solely to target Islam.

He said that since 9/11, animosity and institutional suspicion of Muslims and Islam across the world escalated to “epidemic proportions”.

“Despite protestations to the contrary,” the foreign minister said, “Islam and Muslims are routinely linked to terrorism.”

In some cases, he said, the rhetoric of hate and incitement to violence is officially inspired, noting that repeated pogroms of Muslims have been instigated by officially sanctioned neo-fascist policies and ideologies with complete impunity. “The policies and violent actions of those who deny the right of self-determination of Muslim peoples represent the worst manifestations of Islamophobia today.”

“Unfortunately,” the foreign minister said, “the virus of islamophobia is spreading faster than we have been able to react.

 

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