SHAFAQNA (International Shia News Association)-Highly concerned about the effect of new anti-terrorism measures, fears of Australian Muslims have turned into a real nightmare after the rise in the number of hate crimes in south-east Queensland, threatening inclusion in Australia’s second largest state.
“It’s appalling… there’s an emotional fear. There’s emotion of disgust,” Logan mosque spokesman Ali Kabri told ABC on Sunday, September 14.
“There’s emotion of threat to the Muslim community. Because we’re afraid that for now there are pamphlets but it could lead to violence.
“We’re afraid for our families and afraid for our children.”
Kabri’s angry comments followed the discovery of dozens of anti-Muslim pamphlets outside Logan mosque in South-east Queensland overnight on Saturday, September 13.
The abusive pamphlets read: “Terrorists born in Australia are not Australians. They’re Muslims,” according to 9 News.
Saturday’s attack was not the first in Queensland. In an earlier attack, officials found photos for Makkah and a pig’s head close by.
Moreover, Logan mosque was desecrated two months ago when vandals threw body parts of a pig inside the mosque.
The rise of the attack was coupled by Muslim concerns over the decision of Australian Security Intelligence Organization (Asio) chief David Irvine to raise the country’s threat level from medium to high.
The decision, widely criticized by Muslims, followed the arrest of two men from Brisbane after Australian Federal Police raided an Islamic bookstore and seven homes in Brisbane.
The men were connected to the iQraa Islamic Centre and are alleged to have helped to recruit, fund and help people to travel to Syria to fight.
Condemning the anti-Muslim pamphlets found outside Logan mosque, Kabri, the mosque spokesman, deemed it a “silly” action that tarnishes the image of Australia’s tolerant society.
“But I don’t believe we’re an intolerant society, we’re a tolerant society,” he said.
Muslims, who have been in Australia for more than 200 years, make up 1.7 percent of its 20-million population.
Islam is the country’s second largest religion after Christianity.
Australian far-rights have escalated their hate campaigns against the Muslim community recently.
Reacting to the latest anti-Muslim attack, two mosque in Brisbane, Australia’s third most populous state, announced plans for open doors events to the community next Friday, September 19.
Queensland faiths will be welcomed by Logan and Holland Park mosques where open sessions to answer questions about Islam will held on Friday, from 3-4pm.
On October 25, Logan mosque will host a full open day to hold discussions about Islam and the Muslim community.
Despite of escalating security measures that threaten their freedom, Australian Muslims expressed love for their country, disavowing extremism and extremists.
“Whatever happens overseas… We don’t have control in it. That goes for every single Australian,” Kabri said.
“We love Australia as much as any other Australian does. For us, the message is one and only, we need to live in this country with peace and unity.
“We need to condemn extremism in any way shape or form.”
A similar opinion was shared Queensland Premier who stressed that a minority group has been using Islam to cover their crimes.
“I know that the leaders of the Muslim community in this state and south east Queensland in particular are outraged that some people, a minority are using their religion as a justification for criminal acts of intentions,” Campbell Newman said.
“This is a wonderful multicultural society we have.
“What we’re seeing is not about a religion, it’s about a very small minority group who are intent on undertaking criminal acts and we should see it for what it is and we should reject them and their intentions, just like we would any criminal group.”