Non-Muslims at University of Sydney write letter against Islamophobia

Non-Muslim students and teaching staff at the University of Sydney have issued a letter against Islamophobia, and the recent draconian anti-terror laws introduced by the Australian government.

Signatories of this statement stand opposed to the growing racism, Islamophobia and fear-mongering of the Abbott government. Shamefully, our own University of Sydney’s Vice Chancellor has contributed to the backlash by banning a Muslim speaker from campus. As the government prepares for a new war in Iraq, and continues trying to push through its regressive budget, it is whipping up a climate of fear and hatred. But we will not let Abbott divide and rule.

We condemn:

1. The draconian new terror laws which make travelling to designated regions in the Middle East illegal without “good reason” (effectively reversing the onus of proof), grant police increased powers of arrest on suspicion of terrorism, and grant ASIO more protection and increased powers to search and spy.

2.  The highly orchestrated terror raids carried out on 18 September, which amounted to a spectacle of police violence, intimidation and humiliation against Muslims.

3.  The University of Sydney Vice Chancellor Michael Spence for contributing to this Islamophobic backlash by targeting and banning a particular Muslim speaker, Uthman Badar, from speaking on campus.

4. The growing torrent of racist abuse, vandalism, anti-Mosque demonstrations, physical intimidation and attacks, death threats, and bomb threats to Mosques.

To read the full statement, and for instructions on how to add your signature, go to honisoit.com.

Signatures:

Students

Kyol Blakeney (Indigenous Officer USYD SRC, NSW Indigenous Officer NUS, SRC President-Elect); Brigitte Garozzo (SUPRA Education Officer); Gabrielle Pei Tiatia (SRC Ethnic Affairs Officer); Surabi Alauddin (Vice President, Amnesty International Society); Fahad Ali (President, Students for Justice in Palestine); Kany Hardy (SUPRA councillor and USyd Greens on Campus Treasurer; David Shakes (SRC Queer Officer); Vivian Honan (President, Solidarity student club); Mariam S. Mohammed; Daniel Cheers (Pysch IV); Kitty-Jean Laginha  (anti-racism collective); Imogen Szumer (anti-racism collective; Mariam Bazzi; Cian de Bhaldraithe; Alireza Aboufazeli; James Cruz; Caitlin Doyle; Victor Yang (anti-racism collective); Althea Wang (anti-racism collective); Eliot Hoving (Arts adv honours); Bjorn Wallin (Masters of Teaching); Tomas Emmet de Bhaldraithe; Riki Scanlan (Arts II); Joshua Han; Emmanuel Esteves Sebastiao; Danny Hardiman; Tory Karmakar (Bachelor of Social Work); Don Sahand; Marco Avena (SRC Councillor, SRC Environment Officer, Vice-President Vegesoc), Priya Shaw

Staff

Nick Riemer (English and Linguistics departments); Kevin Lin (casual academic, NTEU); David Brophy (Lecturer, Department of History); Briony Neilson (History department); Anne Picot; Daisy Farnham (casual tutor); Erima Dall (casual tutor, NTEU); Marijke Hoving (casual general staff, NTEU); Jean Parker (casual academic researcher, NTEU); Alex Page (PHD candidate & casual tutor); Elizabeth Humphreys; Matt Withers (casual academic)

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