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Pan-European Islamic org. calls for effective action to confront Islamophobia in West

BRUSSELS, Sept 14 (KUNA) -- The Federation of Islamic Organisations in Europe (FIOE) denounced strongly here Tuesday the horrendous escalation in attempts to disparage the religion of Islam and its sanctities in the West.
FIOE in a statement pointed to the recent plans of burning copies of the Holy Quran by an American church and the award given by German Chancellor Angela Merkel to Kurt Westergaard, the Danish cartoonist behind the drawings insulting Islam and its noble messenger, Mohammad (peace be upon him).
"It is clear that this wave of disgraceful acts targeting the religion of Islam with a torrent of abuse, and making a mockery of the beliefs of revealed religions, would not have escalated to this point were it not for apathy and neglect, and also the active encouragement and incitement of various media, political, and even religious quarters," it said.
"Moreover, more worryingly, is that prominent perpetrators of incitement and abuse should be well received and welcomed, even by official bodies in some European states. Everyone was shocked recently by the act in Germany, with prominent official participation, honouring an artist renowned for works that incite hatred," it noted.
The FIOE called "for effective action that is far more robust, criminalising such acts in law, and prohibiting them procedurally, both isolating them in society, and combating their roots through education, the media, and cultural tools." It is an error to think that this escalating wave of disgraceful actions targets only Islam and its sanctities, rather, the aim is to undermine human values and threaten the foundations of civilised behaviour, peaceful coexistence, and mutual respect, it added.
The Brussels-based FIOE is an umbrella organisations for hundreds of Islamic bodies and groups in Europe. (end) nk.bs KUNA 142233 Sep 10NNNN