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Is anti-Islamic sentiment on the rise in Australia?

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What's fuelling the rise in anti-Islamic sentiment across Europe and the United States?
INSIGHT examines why it's happening at this time and what's really driving this backlash.
European countries, where the doors were once wide open, are closing and the success of multiculturalism is being questioned.

In the US, recent polls show that anti-Islamic sentiment is higher now than one month after the September 11 attacks.
Is this anti-Islamic sentiment on the rise in Australia? INSIGHT puts these questions to a very diverse audience.

Meet the Guests

  • Mark Durie

    Dr Mark Durie is a theologian, human rights activist and pastor of an Anglican church in Melbourne. He has published articles and books on Christian-Muslim relations and religious freedom. A graduate of the Australian National University and the Australian College of Theology, he has held visiting appointments at the University of Leiden, MIT, UCLA and Stanford, and was elected a Fellow of the Australian Academy of the Humanities in 1992.

  • Randa Abdel-Fattah

    Randa Abdel-Fattah is a lawyer, human rights activist and author of Does My Head Look Big in This?, Ten Things I Hate About Me and Where The Streets Had A Name. She is an Australian born Muslim of Palestinian and Egyptian heritage. She writes opinion pieces about Palestine, Australian Muslims and the status of women in Islam.

  • Sheikh Mohamadu Nawas Saleem

    Sheikh Mohamadu Nawas Saleem migrated to Australia in 2000.  He has studied Islamic law in Sri Lanka and Malaysia and is a member of the Australian National Imams Council. He has recently been appointed by a Melbourne law firm as Australia's first sharia consultant where he will advise Muslim clients on how to observe Islamic legal codes alongside Australian law

  • Reza Aslan

    Reza Aslan is an author, scholar of religions and contributing editor to The Daily Beast. His best-selling book No god but God: The Origins, Evolution, and Future of Islam has been translated into thirteen languages and he is also the author of Beyond Fundamentalism: Confronting Religious Extremism in a Globalized Age. He says anti-Muslim sentiment is becoming mainstream and believes the same kind of Islamophobia that has made much of Europe inhospitable to its Muslim citizens is now threatening to seize the U.S.

  • Nonie Darwish

    Nonie Darwish is the Director of Former Muslims United and author of two books: Now They Call Me Infidel; Why I Renounced Jihad for America, Israel and the War on Terror and Cruel and Usual Punishment: The Terrifying Global Implications of Islamic Law. Egyptian born Darwish was raised a Muslim and in 1978 moved to the US where she later converted to Christianity. After September 11, 2001 she began writing on Islam-related topics.

  • Ikebal Patel

    Ikebal Patel is the President of the Australian Federation of Islamic Councils (AFIC) and Chair of the ACT Muslim Advisory Council. He is also a board member of the Australian Partnership of Religious Organisations and National Dialogue for Australian Jewish, Muslims and Christians. Ikebal has presented numerous papers on Australian Muslims as well as on interfaith initiatives in Australia and overseas.


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