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US saw 56% rise in attacks against Muslims and Palestinians in 2023

US saw 56% rise in attacks against Muslims and Palestinians in 2023

The US had seen a distressing surge in discrimination and attacks against Muslims and Palestinians, reaching a record high with 8,061 complaints in 2023, as reported by the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR).

The advocacy group revealed that complaints surged to 8,061 in 2023, marking a significant 56 per cent increase from the previous year and the highest since CAIR began keeping records nearly 30 years ago.

The escalation in incidents, particularly from October to December, was attributed to a combination of rising Islamophobia and bias fuelled by the Israel-Gaza conflict. CAIR noted a disturbing trend of 3,600 incidents occurring during these months alone.

This rise in hostility and discrimination was reflected globally, with human rights advocates reporting an increase in Islamophobia, anti-Palestinian bias, and antisemitism since the latest outbreak of conflict in the Middle East.

Tragic incidents marred the year, including the fatal stabbing of 6-year-old Palestinian American Wadea Al-Fayoume in Illinois, the shooting of three students of Palestinian descent in Vermont, and the stabbing of a Palestinian American man in Texas.

CAIR's report highlighted a concerning resurgence of anti-Muslim hate in 2023, following the first-ever recorded annual drop in complaints in 2022. Incidents skyrocketed from an average of around 500 per month in the first nine months to nearly 1,200 per month in the last quarter.

The most prevalent complaints encompassed categories such as immigration and asylum, employment discrimination, hate crimes, and education discrimination, according to CAIR.

The report identified the escalation of violence in Israel and Palestine in October 2023 as the primary catalyst behind the wave of heightened Islamophobia in the US.

The conflict in the Middle East, sparked by an attack from Palestinian Islamist group Hamas on Israel, led to significant casualties and a subsequent military assault by Israel on Hamas-governed Gaza. The toll included over 32,000 deaths, widespread displacement, dire humanitarian conditions, and allegations of genocide that Israel vehemently denies.

CAIR compiled these figures through various sources, including public statements, videos, reports from public calls and emails, and an online complaint system, reaching out to individuals whose incidents were reported in the media.

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TAGS:antisemitismCouncil on American-Islamic RelationsCAIR Islamophobiaanti-Palestinian bias
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