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UK government ditches plans to define Islamophobia

Robert Carter 
Press TV, London

The UK government has abandoned plans to create a working definition of Islamophobia in a move which has come under heavy fire from critics.

Back in May 2019, the then government headed by Theresa May agreed it would seek to establish an Islamophobia definition to "get a firmer grip of this bigotry and division." But following mounting frustration over a lack of progress on the issue, the effort has now been reportedly ditched.

The news is hardly surprising since May's successor Boris Johnson was himself accused of saying Islamophobic things many times while other Tory ministers have been accused of being deeply Islamophobic themselves.

Reappointed communities secretary Michael Gove has been a long-time critic of so-called "political Islam" and condemned attempts to define Islamophobia as a "danger" for free speech.

Islamophobia is a serious problem across Britain, with Muslims being the most frequently targeted group for religious hate crimes in England and Wales.

Defining Islamophobia could provide new powers to combat anti-Muslim hate. But with a string of scandals having exposed anti-Muslim bigotry within the ruling Party itself, Conservatives just do not seem willing to risk shooting themselves in the foot. 

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