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Joint fight against Islamophobia pulls down West’s "democracy" mask

10 March 2024 08:30 (UTC+04:00)
Joint fight against Islamophobia pulls down West’s "democracy" mask
Elnur Enveroglu
Elnur Enveroglu
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Islamophobia, racism and restriction of religious freedoms are in the spotlight as one of the main problems of today. The international event “Embracing Diversity: Tackling Islamophobia in 2024” held in Baku discussed problems such as the intolerant approach to Islam and the restriction of people's religious freedom, especially in Western countries. Azerbaijan joins the initiative to prevent the spread of a threat such as Islamophobia and takes joint steps with the countries of the world.

Foreign Policy Advisor to the President of Azerbaijan Hikmat Hajiyev, who started the international event held in Baku on March 8 with the message of President Ilham Aliyev, touched on a number of important points related to Islamophobia, which is especially rampant in Europe. In his message, the head of state pointed out that in recent days, a number of political representatives and forces in France, European Union Parliament and Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe gave strength to anti-Islamic thoughts and created a platform for it.

“Unfortunately, certain Western institutions that also portray themselves as democratic are engaging in anti-Islamic activities.

Today, the European Parliament and the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe have become platforms that promote Islamophobia and pursue policies based on this ideology.
The present negative trend is also evident in the operations of some global media entities,” President Ilham Aliyev noted.

It is no coincidence that the international event was in particular held in Azerbaijan. In his speech, President Ilham Aliyev specifically emphasized that Azerbaijan is more affected by harmful ideology such as Islamophobia.

It should be noted that during the thirty-year Armenian occupation, Azerbaijan was subjected to religious and cultural violence by Armenia. Armenian vandals, who turned more than sixty-five mosques, religious monuments and buildings related to Islam into pigsties and animal troughs, demonstrated their hatred of Turks and Azerbaijanis, and even their irreconcilable attitude towards Islam. Unfortunately, those who continue these traditions in Europe today turn a blind eye to these actions of Armenians and even justify them in a stark way.

History testifies to this that in the late 1980s, when Azerbaijanis were expelled from Iravan, one of the ancient cities of Azerbaijan and today's capital of Armenia, there were many ancient mosques there. But the sad fact is that there are no traces left of those mosques. While Armenia started to extradite the majority Azerbaijanis and ethnic Muslim community in Yerevan, it razed all remaining mosques to the ground in the city in order to completely lose track, and falsifying history by completely changing the design of some of them. However, history is not the past – slightly over 30 years have passed, there are many pictures, documents and live witnesses of those buildings. Despite all this, UNESCO remains silent in the face of such injustice.

“Azerbaijan has raised this matter with UNESCO, calling for a technical mission to be sent to that country for assessing the conditions of our cultural and religious sites subjected to destruction in Armenia for years. Unfortunately, to this day, UNESCO is yet to respond to our request,” Azerbaijani President Ilham Aliyev said in his message to the participants of the international conference.

Western countries are considered to be the most responsible party for the world suffering from Islamophobia today. Because this trend is the basis of both their domestic and foreign policies. In countries such as France, Spain, Germany, Sweden and the Netherlands, hatred towards Islam is increasing day by day.

The radical approach of the police to Muslims in France, the burning of the Holy Quran in Sweden and Denmark, and the calling of Muslims cockroaches in the Netherlands constitute the main line of this rotten policy.

In France, the number of discrimination cases against Muslims in state-owned service establishments was 369, while this figure was 197 in the private sector, the Deputy Chairman of the State Committee on Religious Associations of the Republic of Azerbaijan, Gunduz Ismayilov, said at the conference. In addition, the Deputy Chairman also touched on the women’s rights in France and in other European countries.

“In France, 80% of Islamophobic thinking is directed at women. The Muslims are also prevented from receiving religious education. This is the case both in France and in a number of European countries," he added.

It is interesting that the West and Europe, hidden in the dress of democracy, are at the forefront of the world in terms of exploitation of women, violence and religious discrimination. Hijab and headscarves of Muslim women seem like a nightmare to many European political figures, but also the success of the Muslim community in business activities and demographic growth scare them. So, the West's concept of democracy intersects only at one point - the fact that Islam and Muslims are more widespread and tend to increase. The West avoids becoming a mere point of view and being criticized. For this reason, hiding behind the veil of democracy, it carries out harmful policies such as Islamophobia and racism with the help of other proxy forces.

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Elnur Enveroglu is AzerNews’ Deputy Editor-in-Chief, follow him on @ElnurMammadli1

Follow us on Twitter @AzerNewsAz

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