Following reports of an Islamophobic attack on Zahra Kazemi Saleh - a female Muslim student - the Federation of Student Islamic Societies (FOSIS) condemns the assault and calls on the government and society as a whole to acknowledge the severity of anti-Muslim abuse and work towards eradicating this evil. Miss Saleh sustained facial injuries after she was beaten by four women for refusing to remove her headscarf. The attack comes shortly after an Imam at an East London Mosque was hit and injured by a brick after youths vandalised the Mosque. It also comes exactly a year after the former vice-president of FOSIS, Abida Malik, and her husband were assaulted on a train heading towards Nottingham and were victims of Islamophobic abuse.
Qasim Rafiq, spokesman for FOSIS said today, "The vicious assault on a Muslim girl is yet another in a spate of anti-Muslim attacks in the UK and comes soon after an East London Imam was hit by a brick whilst in the Mosque. That Miss Saleh was assaulted after attempts by the assailants to remove her headscarf is proof of the anti-Muslim nature of the attack and indicative of the increasing Islamophobic sentiment spreading across the UK. The time has come for society at large to acknowledge the widespread existence of anti-Muslim abuse and work together to root out this evil."
He further added, "We sincerely hope that those responsible for such a cowardly act are swiftly identified and brought to justice. Our thoughts are with Miss Saleh and her family following their horrific ordeal and we wish her a speedy recovery. We encourage all Muslims who feel threatened and are subject to Islamophobic abuse to contact the relevant authorities and report the incident to the Muslim Safety Forum"
1. FOSIS (est. 1963) is the umbrella organisation of student groups in colleges and universities throughout the UK and Ireland, representing over 90,000 Muslim students.