Tarja Cronberg: Islamophobia Had Been Fueled by the Response of the West to 9/11
Hatef Mokhtar of The Oslo Times had a very interesting interview on a wide range of subjects with Tarja Cronberg, a member of the European Parliament, the whole interview is well worth the read if you are interested in European issues that effect the whole world.
Cronberg states explicitly links Islamophobia in the context of Western nations response to 9/11:
Islamophobia had been fuelled by the response of the West to 9/11 – Tarja Cronberg Member of European Parliament
(The Oslo Times)
TOT: Apart from the critical economics and political situations the Europe is going through, there is one more of major concern that now has been doing rounds of politics, has also been felt as a pinch in the speeches of various European leaders during elections and among the very European native society as well as even in certain decisions taken by some European countries. We are talking about the growth of Islamophobia in Europe.
a.) Why Muslims and their conservative nature of their culture are being seen as threat to the native European society?
b.) What are steps that are being introduced by European Parliament to accommodate and integrate Muslims and their culture in the European system and the society?
c.) Does the government of Finland and your party are working to formulate any policy framework in order to address the issues by this Islamic influx in the country and in the region that has changed the demographics of many countries in Europe?
Tarja Cronberg: Islamophobia had been fuelled by the response of the western governments to 9/11 . The measures of “war on terrorism” have been alleviated, and this change in the policies hopefully will soften also some prejudices in Europe. It will be a long process as the policies have breached human rights.
Unfortunately, also some of the far-right groupss have taken advantage of fuelled islamophopbia and they have used their own means to provoke it.
The European parliament has called EU to abolish religious intolerance. This includes islamophobia.
In Finland the immigration has been small-scale compared to many countries. Anyhow the immigrants that have come, have found it difficult to get employed. We have proposed to deal with the problem by integration measures such as language and other training, and with different forums for cultural exchange.