To mark the end of the course “Islam and Muslims Today: Fundamentals, diversity and relations with Spain,” organized by Casa Árabe and Spain’s Diplomatic School, the results of two reports on Islamophobia in Spain will be presented at a round table discussion on Models of society, stereotypes and Islamophobia in Europe. At the presentation, we will analyze the situation within the European context along with experts and research centers which specialize on this subject.
Participating in the round table discussion will be Alfonso Casani, a researcher with the Islamic Culture Foundation (FUNCI), who will be presenting the results of a report titled “Islamophobia in Spain. National Report 2015,” published in April 2016; Jordi Moreras Palenzuela, a professor of Anthropology at the Universidad Rovira i Virgili in Tarragona and a specialist in Muslim communities and Islamic associations and organizations in Catalonia and Europe; Ángeles Ramírez Fernández, a professor of Social Anthropology at the Universidad Autónoma de Madrid (UAM) and a specialist on gender and Moroccan immigration in Spain; and Riay Tatary Bakry, president of the Islamic Commission of Spain (CIE), who will be presenting the results of the Islamophobia Report of 2016, completed by the Observatorio Andalusí of the Union of Muslim Communities of Spain (UCIDE), to be published in upcoming weeks.
After the round table discussion, the course will be officially closed by the General Director of Casa Árabe, Pedro Villena, along with the Ambassador-Director of the Diplomatic School, Enrique Viguera. They will then proceed to give out the diplomas.
The report on Islamophobia in Spain. National Report 2015, completed by the FUNCI, is the chapter on Spain forming part of the report on Islamophobia in Europe, the European Islamophobia Report 2015, coordinated and published by a Turkish research center, the Foundation for Political, Economic and Social Research. According to this report, despite the belief that Islamophobia is not a problem in Spain, over the last twelve months, the number of Islamophobic attacks reported has increased four-fold. The aspects which are most important to be able to understand the spread of this type of discrimination in the country are, first and foremost, the existence of a series of prejudices of a historical nature against “Moors,” stretching back to the period of Al-Andalus and the Reconquista, as well as the times of political tension that Spain is now experiencing, the uprise of terrorism by the so-called Islamic State and the Syrian refugee crisis, all of which are having a considerable impact on the situation for the Muslim populations throughout Europe. The report analyzes the existence of Islamophobia in different realms within the country, including the education system, the media and the justice system, and the development of an anti-terrorism policy.
The 2016 Report on Islamophobia is an annual report published for over a decade by the Observatorio Andalusí, an entity created by the UCIDE as an institution for the observation and tracking of the Muslim population’s situation and Islamophobia in Spain.