On 5th August 2018, the popular British newspaper The Daily Telegraph published an op-ed about Denmark’s Burqa Ban by the former British Foreign Secretary [Foreign Affairs Minister] Boris Johnson. In the article, Johnson uses Islamophobic language that calls women who wear the burqa “ridiculous” and compares them to “letter boxes” and “bank robber[s]”. He has been widely criticised for this and told to apologise by his own Conservative party.
From a non-Muslim journalist wearing a burka to mock those who wear it, to headlines deceiving readers to believing that Islam is taking the role of the Protestant Church in schools,, these August highlights are an overview of the most significant results of our monitoring of traditional and new media in Belgium, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, and the United Kingdom.
After a coalition of 100 Muslim women denounced discrimination in employment against veiled women, a Belgian citizen accuses them wear the headscarf just for its appearance and not to be true campaigners for equality. This is our Belgium's media monitoring highlight for August 2018.
A German tabloid deceives readers into believing that Islamic studies are given priority over Protestant religion in schools. But only subscribers can read the real reason. And it has nothing to do with an invasion. This is our Germany's media monitoring highlight for August 2018.
When Chantal Delsol claims that Muslim migrants cannot fully integrate into Europe, she is implying the moral superiority of European society and the need for (anti-Muslim) assimilation. This is our France's media monitoring highlight for August 2018
A Daily Mail non-Muslim columnist recounts her experience of wearing a burka for a week and uses it to dehumanise full-face veiled women.This is our UK's media monitoring highlight for August 2018
With his dehumanising remarks against women who wear the full-face veil, Boris Johnson has normalised anti-Muslim hate in Britain.
The Greek newspaper Eleftheri Ora has been served a formal complaint by the Greek partner of Get The Trolls Out, Symbiosis. The complaint relates to an article printed in Eleftheri Ora on May 22, 2018 in which it states that the Greek government is considering granting voting rights to immigrants living permanently in Greece.
If one analyses the media in Europe today it becomes evident that there has been a rise and acceptance of xenophobic, racist and anti-religion narratives. This has evidently run parallel to – and quite possibly has been one of the effects of – the surge of right-wing extremism movements and of ultra-nationalist groups in many parts of the region. Some media outlets have been echoing such narratives, thus reinforcing them. Media and journalists face a serious challenge in tackling these discourses of prejudice, intolerance and hostility towards the other and otherness.
The Belgian newspaper Le Vif reported about a suicide in Verviers where the person blew himself up. The newspaper decided to clarify that it was not a terrorist attack. This point is repeated in the headline, in the intro, and in the article. Despite this incident having nothing to do with terrorism, almost half of the article is devoted to recount how in 2015, a week after the Charlie Hebdo attack, a terrorist cell was dismantled in Verviers.