A report published by Teesside University has shown that the number of anti-Muslim hate crimes committed in the UK spiked after each of the three most recent Jihadi attacks. According to the report, attacks in Sydney, Copenhagen, and Paris last year led to perhaps unsurprising reprisals from certain elements of society. Following the Charlie Hebdo attack in Paris, the number of violent crimes committed against Muslims increased four-fold, but actually dropped overall when compared to 2013-2014.
The Tell Mama project is run by the Teesside University’s centre for fascist, anti-fascist, and post-fascist studies, and previous figures have been quoted by politicians including Home Secretary Theresa May. They highlight the negative impact that global terrorist attacks have on all local communities, and the crimes are certainly not concentrated on local people or businesses, with the majority of crimes committed online.
548 incidents were recorded during the most recent publication, but according to the report it was not usually the victims that reported the incidents. What’s more, with more than half of the crimes being online offences, this means that features that enable users to report abuse on other accounts may have actually have some impact, especially as courts around the world force Internet businesses to pay attention to the crimes that are committed on their websites.
The Charlie Hebdo attack was a self-proclaimed Jihadi attack, and one that stirred up a lot of emotion after the death of police and civilians. According to Tell Mama, there had been 12 incidents reported to the group in the seven days leading up to the attack, but 45 in the week following the attack, meaning an increase of nearly 400%, and this wasn’t an isolated incident of increases.
The Home Secretary has previously stated that she wants all anti-Muslim attacks reported separately so that she, and the government as a whole, can enjoy a better understanding of the anti-Muslim feelings in the country. Currently, the Tell Mama project is the only project of its kind that records this kind of data, and for that reason it is often cited by politicians and used by media reports.