The term 'anti-Muslim hatred' accurately describes the phenomenon which the European Commission intends to address. It consists of preventing and combating hate speech, hate crime as well as discrimination directed against groups or individual members of such groups based on their religion or ethnic origin.
Why the need for action?
Reports from international and civil society organisations and recent surveys point to persistent intolerance and racism against Muslims in the EU, as well as to structural forms of discrimination (e.g. in access to employment or education) directed against individuals, women in particular, with a Muslim background. Over the past years reports from international and civil society organisations have pointed to an increase in insecurity among Muslims in Europe as well as forms of discrimination directed against individuals and communities. Surveys such as the Special Eurobarometer on Discrimination in the EU in 2015 (published in September 2015) and the Pew Research Centre report on views about minorities, diversity and national identity in the EU (published in July 2016) clearly point to the fact that unfavourable views of Muslims appear to have surged in the past few years.
Coordinator on combating anti-Muslim hatred
Tommaso Chiamparino has been appointed Coordinator on combating anti-Muslim hatred on 1 July 2018, taking over the role held by David Friggieri since 1 December 2015. As the Coordinator's main mandate is to address anti-Muslim hate speech, hate crime and discrimination, the key stakeholders are Muslim, and other, organisations which deal with anti-racism and non-discrimination policy at European and national level.
Monitoring anti-Muslim hatred and discrimination
On 3 December 2018, the FRA has created the first dedicated database on anti-Muslim hatred, containing recent surveys, case laws and reports. The database will be available online as from 3 December 2018 at this link
Published on 21 September 2017, the Muslims – Selected findings specific focus of the Fundamental Rights Agency's wider EU-MIDIS II survey provides important EU-wide data on the discrimination experienced by persons with a Muslim background in different areas of life (labour market, education, housing, health and other services), criminal victimization (including hate crime), police stops, social inclusion and societal participation. Taken together, the survey findings provide key data to support a wide range of measures in the areas of integration and non-discrimination.
Resources and training material
ODIHR Hate Crime Data
Facing Facts online course on Understanding & Identifying Anti-Muslim Hate crime
European policy and legislation on combating racism and xenophobia
The EU has specific legislation (framework decision 2008/913/JHA) on combating racism and xenophobia by means of criminal law which obliges all EU countries to put in place legislation to penalise the most serious manifestations of racism and xenophobia, such as the public incitement to racist violence or hatred (hate speech) as well as any other crimes perpetrated with a racist motivation (hate crime).
On 14 June 2016, the European Commission launched the High Level Group on combating Racism, Xenophobia and other forms of Intolerance to step up cooperation and coordination, to better prevent and combat hate crime and hate speech. It brings together all 28 EU Member States, international organisations and civil society organisations. The Commission asked the EU Fundamental Rights Agency to coordinate a Sub-group that will work to develop methodologies for recording and collecting data on hate crime.
The Commission together with major social media platforms agreed on 31 May 2016 on a Code of conduct to fight illegal hate speech online, including hate speech against Muslims. By signing up to the Code, the platforms commit to review the majority of valid notifications in less than 24 hours and remove or disable access to such content, if necessary. Progress is regularly reported in the context of the High Level group on combating racism, xenophobia and other forms of intolerance. In the recent evaluations of the Code, hate speech targeting Muslims features as the most frequently reported ground of hatred online.