Rising Islamophobic Discourses in Europe and Fight Against Islamophobia on the Basis of International Organizations

Umut Kedikli, Mehmet Akça

Abstract


European Civilization was built on the concepts of multiculturalism, tolerance, and dialogue but in the post-Cold War period, without considering these concepts, some European politicians, scientists, and the press have associated concepts of conflict, terror, disintegration, exclusion, and assimilation with Islam. Anti-immigrant and anti-Muslim attitudes are viewed as a new coherent ideology to replace anti-communism following the post-collapse period of the Soviet Union. Thus, a new enemy image and an exclusionist and alienating discourse aimed especially at Muslim societies in Europe were created after the 1990s. Subsequently, this new discourse diffusing across the European continent is referred to as “Islamophobia”. Gradually Muslim immigrants are perceived to be the number one fundamental cause of politic, economic and social issues in European countries so Islamophobic discourses have intensified following the 90s. The aftermath of the September 11 attacks, the actions of terror organizations claiming to commit their attacks in the name of Islam in the world -and especially in Europe- have contributed to the spread of Islamophobia across Europe. Extreme-right wings in pursuit of taking advantage of all these negative circumstances for political gain attempted to find public ground by reflecting Islam as a religion of violence and Muslims as ‘terrorists.’ In this article, it is argued that concrete Islamophobic discourses erode some certain values such as human rights, democracy, plurality and multiculturalism, which Europe was established on these. It is also showed that actions of various extreme-right parties and other wings in different European countries accelerate this process. Policies adopted by international organizations to fight against Islamophobia will be analysed and the problems encountered in these efforts will also be presented.

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Mediterranean Journal of Social Sciences ISSN 2039-9340(Print) ISSN 2039-2117(Online)

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