443 results for author: Kashif Ahmed


Goodbye, Bernier: Canadians have rejected your politics of fear

By Mustafa Farooq The Globe and Mail | October 26, 2019 Mustafa Farooq is a lawyer and the executive director of the National Council of Canadian Muslims. At the beginning of the campaign, we at the National Council of Canadian Muslims (NCCM) saw clearly that Maxime Bernier and the People’s Party of Canada (PPC) planned to use this election cycle to see if Islamophobia and Trump-style politics of fear and division would work in Canada. Thus we were confronted with “platform paradox”: How do you publicly critique someone engaging in racist conduct without adding fuel to the fire? How do you prevent them from using your critique to raise ...

Challenging a law that divides and endangers

By Noa Mendelsohn Aviv and Mustafa Farooq Montreal Gazette | June 17, 2019 Bill 21, An Act Respecting the Laicity of the State, passed in the Quebec National Assembly this past weekend. Bill 21, of course, is the law that will ban Jews, Muslims, Sikhs and others who wear symbols of their faith from pursuing careers in numerous public sector jobs. As civil liberties advocates, we have had Bill 21 at the front of our minds since its introduction in March. And this has become even more concerning because of what happened in Quebec City merely a few weeks ago. On May 25 at the Centre Culturel Islamique de Québec mosque, an individual allegedly ...

Standing on guard against Quebec’s unconstitutional Bill 21

By Mustafa Farooq Edmonton Journal | June 8, 2019 I’m ready to admit something: I always tear up when I hear the Canadian national anthem. I think my emotional response to the anthem began at a young age, when, as I stood in Grade 3 assembly to sing the anthem, I saw my mother in the crowd of parents. She stood tall as she always had, in a long jacket and wearing a white hijab, standing out in a crowd of, shall we say, less-than-racially-diverse parents in Sherwood Park. As the anthem welled up, “God keep our land/glorious and free!” I saw my mother wipe the tears away from her eyes. Cartography is a strange science. Yet the map of our ...

Anti-semitism and Islamophobia are two sides of the same coin

By Mustafa Farooq Edmonton Journal | May 9, 2019 On April 27, in what feels like only a few days ago, a 19-year-old man walked into the Chabad of Poway synagogue in a San Diego suburb and opened fire on worshippers celebrating Passover. Lori Gilbert-Kaye was tragically murdered, and three others were wounded in the attack. While the investigation remains ongoing, the perpetrator seems to have been inspired, as per an online manifesto, by white supremacy. The gunman praised Robert Bowers, who killed 11 people and wounded six others in the Pittsburgh Tree of Life synagogue shootings six months ago. Yet his online manifesto was not simply ...

NCCM Testifies Before Senate Hearing on Bill C-59

On May 6, 2019, the NCCM testified before the Standing Senate Committee on National Security and Defence on Bill C-59, An Act Respecting National Security Matters. Bill C-59 was tabled by the Liberal government to make critical improvements to existing national security laws enacted by the previous Conservative government - namely, Bill C-51. As Mustafa Farooq, Executive Director of the NCCM noted, “There are positive developments in C-59, including increased oversight measures and changes to the No Fly List. However, we continue to have concerns around the powers of national security agencies and a lack of consultation on the specific ...

Quebec’s bill to ban religious symbols sparks condemnation

By Les Perreaux The Globe and Mail | March 28, 2019 Waves of condemnation washed over Quebec’s move Thursday to ban some public-sector workers from wearing religiously symbolic articles, despite Premier François Legault’s attempt to pacify the issue with a grandfather clause exempting current employees who stay in the same job. . . . The National Council of Canadian Muslims called the legislation discriminatory and regressive. Executive director Ihsaan Gardee said the timing of Quebec’s law was troubling. “We’re concerned about how it might embolden people who already hold racist or hateful views to act out on them,” Mr. ...

Police investigating after mosque receives ‘troubling’ letter

By Julia Page CBC News | March 26, 2019 The National Council of Canadian Muslims (NCCM) is calling on people to speak out and help track Islamophobic incidents across Canada, in response to a "disturbing" letter sent last week to a mosque in Lévis, Que. . . . The executive director of NCCM, Ihsaan Gardee, said the letter may meet the definition of a hate crime, because its underlying message is "you're not welcome here," and "you don't have a right to have a voice to advocate on behalf of your communities." That notion goes against the idea of equality of citizenship "that we have enshrined in our constitution," Gardee said. The NCCM ...

Canadian Labour Congress and Muslim group accuse Scheer of emboldening far-right actors

By Michelle Zilio The Globe and Mail | March 21, 2019 The leaders of Canada’s largest labour organization and a prominent national Muslim group say Conservative Leader Andrew Scheer is emboldening far-right extremists by failing to call out Islamophobia following the New Zealand mosque shootings and attending events with people who promote hate speech. . . . Ihsaan Gardee, the executive director of the National Council of Canadian Muslims (NCCM), said Mr. Scheer’s initial decision to avoid saying that the victims were Muslims and the attacks took place at mosques “felt very deliberate.” “There is a real danger that this kind of ...

After New Zealand, Tory cancels event with anti-Muslim speaker

By Janice Dickson The Globe and Mail | March 16, 2019 Conservative MP Garnett Genuis says after the pair of deadly attacks in New Zealand he will no longer host an event on Parliament Hill featuring a guest speaker who drew sharp criticism from the Muslim community. Muslim advocates said the guest speaker, Baroness Caroline Cox, promotes hate against Muslims, and she has also been accused of supporting Syrian President Bashar al-Assad. . . . Ihsaan Gardee, the executive director of the National Council of Canadian Muslims, said his organization wrote to both Mr. Genuis and co-host Conservative MP Kelly Block to ask them to reconsider ...

Tory leader issues new statement on attacks including mention of Muslims

By Mia Rabson The Canadian Press | March 15, 2019 OTTAWA — Conservative Leader Andrew Scheer issued two statements on the terrorist attacks in New Zealand on Friday — the second after being criticized for not mentioning in the first that the attack was against Muslims at mosques during their Friday prayers. . . . The National Council of Canadian Muslims criticized the omission in a statement Friday afternoon. “While some of our elected leaders sadly choose not to mention ‘Muslim’ or ‘mosque’ while denouncing the Christchurch attacks, the reality is that these horrific shootings and the Quebec City mosque attack on Jan. ...