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  • EFOMW participated in roundtable on ”Combating Antisemitism and Islamophobia in Europé”
  • Date 16 februari 2016 February 2016

    Roundtable on the outcomes of the first European Union (EU) Annual Colloquium on Fundamental Rights on anti-Semitic and anti-Muslim hatred and hate speech in Europe

    Hosted by the European Parliament Anti-Racism and Diversity Intergroup's Islamophobia Working Group and the European Parliament Working Group on Antisemitism


    As a representative from civil society EFOMW was invited to join discussions about our assessment of rising anti-Semitism and Islamophobia in Europe to present our work and put forward some recommendations for the EU institutions.

    EFOMWs board member Dorsaf Ben Dhiab presented our concerns about rise of Islamophobia in recent years and its disproportionate impact on lives of Muslim women. 

    The number of attacks, physical harassments and crimes in the public areas against women demonstrating their Muslim faith identity, by wearing a headscarf, has dramatically increased in many countries, for example France, in the UK, or Sweden. This suffering is also shared by Muslim children, who witness and experience the effect of Islamophobia in their own lives – in the school or home yard.


    She also talked about our work with women organisations at the grassroots level and our efforts to increase organisational capacity to advocate against Islamophobia.

    We are working on the project “Women against Islamophobia” in order to empower our member organisations and join Brussels based advocacy initiatives to demand equality of Muslim women in Europe within the EU policy framework, for Europe to remain true to its values such as peace and solidarity.


    She also put forward following recommendations:

    In the light of the growing Islamophobia in Europe, we urge the European Commission, European Parliament and Member States to the following:


    • Guarantee that EU anti-discrimination laws are actually implemented by Member States
      This includes imposing effective, proportional and dissuasive sanctions for cases of discrimination in access to employment and in the workplace. The Existing laws need to address the specific dimension of multiple discrimination, especially equality laws, and governments must adopt specific measures to better protect Muslim women.

    • The European Commission to propose a framework for national strategies/policy commitments to combat Islamophobia with specific and concrete goals according to each national context, in areas such as education, employment, exercise of freedom of religion.

    • Member States to incorporate anti-racism, gender and diversity training in their police training programs, including a focus on issues related to gendered Islamophobia.



    During discussions with representatives from social networks she also pointed out importance of the role that social media can play in combating online hate speech and hate propaganda as well as stereotypes about muslim women. Social networks could also help with encouraging positive campaigns.

    See agenda with list of participants



  • 28.02.2016
European Forum of Muslim Women EFOMW
Rue Archimède 50, 1000 Bruxelles, Belgium