15th March marks the UN International Day to Combat Islamophobia.

This month has proved to be a contentious month for Muslims across Britain so far, with senior members of the Conservative Party peddling far-right conspiracy theories about Islamists taking over Britain, to news of a 335% increase in Islamophobic hate crime since October. During this particularly contentious time for Muslim communities across the country, I have been working tirelessly in Parliament to hold the Government to account for their failure to effectively tackle Islamophobia and to raise greater awareness about Islamophobia in Parliament.

Two weeks ago, I had the pleasure of inviting six Muslim women TikTok content creators to Parliament to recognise and celebrate the hard work of Muslim creators on the platform in recognition of International Women’s Day. You can read more about what we spoke about here.

I then had the privilege of hosting an event in Parliament to screen the a preview of HIJABI, a film spotlighting the Islamophobia faced by British Muslim women. The film screening was followed by a panel discussion with the women interviewed in the film, the BAFTA award winning filmmaker, Samir Mehanovic and Labour’s Shadow Secretary of State for Justice, Shabana Mahmood MP. You can read more on the event here, and the write up of the event in The Independent here.


I hosted the Centre for Media Monitoring (CfMM) in Parliament for the launch of their ground-breaking new report on the bias in media reporting of the conflict in Gaza since October. We heard from a range of speakers including CfMM director Rizwana Hamid, Baroness Sayeeda Warsi, and a range of journalists from the BBC, Sky News and Al-Jazeera including Peter Oborne, Richard Burgess and Richard Gizbert. You can read Media Bias: Gaza 2023-24 here

Afzal Khan MP sitting at the CfMM Panel
Afzal Khan MP sitting at the CfMM Panel

I then headed to Baku in Azerbaijan to attend the International Conference on Tackling Islamophobia, where I joined state representatives and religious leaders in discussions on how to tackle Islamophobia in the West.

Afzal Khan MP with delegates
Afzal Khan MP with delegates

Following weeks of several Conservative MPs peddling far-right conspiracy theories about Islamists and Muslims taking over Britain and a lack of action by the Prime Minister to tackle this Islamophobia, I took to Prime Ministers Questions to call out the Prime Minister for his complacency on tackling the rampant Islamophobia that continues to rage through the Tory party, highlighting his hypocrisy in his plans to tackle extremism.


To mark the start of Ramadan, I attended the All-Party Parliamentary Group (APPG) on British Muslims Big Iftar in Parliament where we heard from a range of great speakers including the UN Special Rapporteur on contemporary forms of racism, Ashwini K.P. and Ndileka Mandela, granddaughter of Nelson Mandela. It was a privilege to hear from them both about the solidarity needed in the anti-racism movement, and to hear their thoughts on the need to stamp out Islamophobia globally.

Days like today are incredibly important for raising awareness of Islamophobia globally and across Britain which is why I have been continously working hard to hold the Government to account for its failure to safeguard Muslim communities and pressure them to act. In order to tackle a problem, you must understand and define it first, which is why the Government must commit to adopting an official definition of Islamophobia as a crucial first step in the fight against it and I will continue to pressure ministers to do so.



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