CAIRO – Facing increasing hate attacks targeting mosques and Islamic centers, Sweden Muslims are planning a comprehensive survey to define threats facing the religious minority in the Nordic country.
“It's only a matter of time until someone is seriously injured or dies,” Helena Hummasten, the head of the Muslim Council of Sweden, told Svergies Radio (SR), The Local reported on Monday, January 20.
Over the past year, mosques and Islamic centers in Sweden have come under a string of hate attacks, escalating Muslims’ fears.
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In 2013 alone, around 300 hate crimes against Muslims were reported in Sweden.
This January, Stockholm mosque came under attack when vandals scrawled swastikas on its doors.
In a gesture of solidarity, bouquets of pink and white flowers were taped over the black swastikas on the doors of the central Stockholm mosque.
Another attack was reported earlier in November 2013 when pig's trotters were thrown into a mosque south of Stockholm after shattering windows of its main door.
According to the Swedish National Council for Crime Prevention, these incidents were on the rise, forcing many Muslims to abstain from attending prayers at mosques.
“I know people who fear for their safety when they go to the mosque,” Hummasten said.
Along with interpreting the threats that face mosques, the proposed National Survey is expected to offer several methods to improve security in Islamic centers and mosque.
The funding of the survey will be offered by the Swedish Commission for Government Support to Faith Communities for the survey expected to offer insights to threats encountering Sweden's mosques.
Muslims make up between 450,000 and 500,000 of Sweden’s nine million people, according to the US State Department report in 2011.
Across the Nordic region, anti-immigration parties, which languished after Norwegian far-rightist Anders Behring Breivik killed 77 people in 2011, are gaining support.
The Sweden Democrats have advanced in voter surveys to nearly 10 percent from 5 percent at the last election in 2010.
The anti-immigrant tone is drawing criticism in Sweden, a country known for its history of tolerance.
Reproduced with permission from OnIslam.net - Read full article here
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