Pro-Gaza demonstration in central Berlin (French)

Britain's Tell Mama campaign has recorded more than 700 reports of anti-Islamic incidents in Britain since Oct. 7, more than <> times the previous month.

Abdallah Zekri, vice president of France's Islamic Council, said the council had received 42 threatening or insulting messages in less than a month since the battle of Toufan al-Aqsa, but declined to report any of them because of the wave of targeting mosques with hate and racist messages.

Official data shows a rise in the number of incidents of hate attacks targeting Muslims in Britain, France and Germany at varying rates, but they do not include incidents of attacks that have not been recorded, such as targeting children in schools or attacks on mosques.

Hate marches

Zara Mohammed, secretary general of the Muslim Council of Britain, said the British government's description of pro-Palestinian protests as "marches of hatred" had made it difficult to defend the rights of Muslims or Palestinians in the event of an attack.

She added that the government's description was "incitement of communities against each other, which is very divisive and dangerous."

Rachid Abdouni, head of an association supervising a mosque in Paris, confirmed that the French police refused to provide additional police protection around the mosque at the end of last October, after a far-right member threatened to burn the mosque.

The office of Berlin member of parliament Hayyan Omar was also subjected to 3 incidents of assault after the seventh of last October, and varied between the arrival of posts full of hate phrases mixed with pieces of glass and dirt, and smashing a window and assault with a hammer.

Commenting on these incidents, Omar, who is of Syrian-Kurdish origin, said, "I feel really alone, if it is not possible to protect someone with a responsible position, what would others feel?" He explained that the police told him that they were investigating, but did not guarantee adequate security at his headquarters.

Muslims' sense of threat was exacerbated by the victory of right-wing Geert Wilders a week ago in the Netherlands, where he had previously called for banning mosques and the Koran (French)

Fear of reporting

"The vast majority of Muslims do not complain when they are victims of such acts," said Abdullah Zekri, explaining that they avoid spending time on an issue that will eventually be ignored.

Rima Hanano, from the German NGO CLIM, said: "The police often do not record anti-Islamic crimes under this label, but rather record them as damage to property."

Hanano added that people affected by these crimes are wary of going to the authorities, "for fear of further harm, not believing them, or portraying them as the perpetrators."

Demonstrators in Paris' République Square protest the Israeli aggression on Gaza (Anatolia)

Official reaction

The British government has reiterated its refusal to tolerate hate crimes, whether in relation to anti-Semitism or hatred against Muslims.

Germany's interior ministry said it was tackling all hate crimes, including crimes explicitly targeting Muslims, noting that it conducted a survey this year that "provided a greater understanding of anti-Muslim racism."

French Interior Minister Gérald Darmanin acknowledged the rise in "anti-Muslim acts" after Oct. 7, while a French police spokesman said that data on anti-Muslim incidents were "incomplete," noting that they relied solely on victims filing complaints.

French President Emmanuel Macron also commented last week on news of mosque attacks and anti-Muslim comments from intellectuals on television that "the protection of French converts to Judaism should not be matched by a distortion of French converts to Islam."

Historical motives

Reza Zia Ebrahimi, a historian at King's College London and author of Anti-Semitism and Islamophobia: A Tangled History, said: "Western Europe's colonial and religious past portrayed Islam as reactionary and alien, contributing to deepening prejudice between sectors of the population and in institutions."

Ibrahimi commented on the French Interior Ministry's decision to ban pro-Palestinian protests as a threat to public order as "stimulating the view that Arabs are aggressors and that supporters of Palestinians are motivated by anti-Semitism."

"There is a need to appoint a federal government commissioner on the issue of Islamophobia," said German Muslim Council member Ayman Mazik, commenting on the presence of commissioners to follow up on anti-Semitism and anti-Roma racism.

"The fact that we have so many commissioners in Germany with no commissioner on Islam in particular is discrimination in itself," he said.

Germany's designated commissioner for racism, Reem al-Abli, acknowledged the need to improve oversight after an Interior Ministry poll showed that one in two Germans had anti-Islamic views.

Source: French