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Izza Leghtas, who is Western Europe researcher at the NGO Human Rights Watch, has written an important dispatch on why France must now tackle intolerance against Jews and Muslims in the aftermath of the appalling Charlie Hebdo killings.
Twelve people were murdered yesterday (7 January) in an appalling attack on French satirical magazine Charlie Hebdo. This has inflamed religious and ethnic tensions, as the killers are believed to be violent Islamist extremists.
The UK government is seeking parliament’s approval to join the USA in carrying out air strikes on Iraq. The aim is to weaken Isis forces, responsible for various atrocities. But the attack may strengthen them instead.
This morning, I was invited onto BBC Ulster’s Sunday Sequence programme to discuss my response as a Christian pacifist to the situation in northern Iraq. Our discussion followed headlines reporting that English church leaders have criticised the UK government’s response to Islamic extremism.
At least three Muslims were shot dead in southern Sri Lanka after a hardline ‘Sinhala Buddhist’ group went on the rampage. Dozens more were injured and buildings set alight as the Bodu Bala Sena marched on Aluthgama and surrounding areas.
If you believe the Daily Mail, then a European election candidate has been arrested “for quoting Winston Churchill”.
As a teetotal Christian, I would not want to sell alcohol. If I worked at Marks & Spencer, and had politely asked a customer to pay another member of staff for her champagne, I doubt that it would have led to a national media story. Marks & Spencer’s policy on this issue has hit the headlines because of a staff member who made such a request – and who is a Muslim. This conveniently suits the agenda of the right-wing media, obsessed as they are with portraying Muslims as weird.