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UK Sees Over Threefold Surge in Anti-Muslim Hate Amid Israel-Gaza Conflict

Anti-Muslim hate incidents in the UK have more than tripled in the four months since the outbreak of conflict between Israel-Gaza, according to monitoring group Tell MAMA. The organization recorded 2,010 such cases between October 7, 2022, when Hamas launched deadly attacks in Israel, and February 7, 2023.

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This marks the highest number of anti-Muslim hate incidents documented in four months since Tell MAMA began operating in 2011. It represents a 335% increase from the 600 cases recorded over the same timeframe last year.

The incidents tracked range from abusive behaviour, discrimination and assault to vandalism, threats and hate speech. Over 1,100 have occurred online, while 901 took offline, predominantly in London. Women were the target in 65% of cases.

Tell MAMA expressed deep concern over the impact of the Israel-Gaza hostilities on fueling hate crimes and threatening social cohesion within the UK. The director called the rise in anti-Muslim hatred “unacceptable” and urged political leaders to condemn such bigotry.

This surge comes as a Jewish charity also reported record levels of anti-Semitic incidents in 2023, with a 147% year-on-year increase to over 4,100 cases. Two-thirds occurred after Hamas’s deadly October attacks in Israel, which killed around 1,200 people.

Israel subsequently launched an extensive military offensive in Gaza, which has resulted in over 29,000 deaths thus far, per Hamas health officials. Tell MAMA said the conflict has provoked anti-Jewish and anti-Muslim sentiment domestically.

The government spokesperson stated there is no tolerance for hate in British society and promised complete investigations and prosecutions of such crimes. However, community leaders argue that Muslim and Jewish citizens should not become targets at home due to events overseas. Redoubling efforts around security and speaking out against bigotry are seen as imperative.

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