QUEEN’S PARK – Marit Stiles, the Leader of the Official Opposition NDP, and Deputy Leader Doly Begum (Scarborough Southwest) issued the following statement after an alleged hate-motivated attack on a mosque in Markham:
“We were deeply disturbed to learn of the horrific attack that took place at the Islamic Society of Markham masjid. Muslims across the world are celebrating the holy month of Ramadan, and it is unconscionable that Muslim Canadians have to live in constant fear at their place of worship. Everyone deserves to feel safe and practice their faith in peace. We strongly condemn these cowardly acts of violence and would like to assure the Muslim community here in Ontario that we are here to support them during this difficult time.
What happened over the weekend is unacceptable, and concrete action to tackle this form of hate is long overdue.
This attack comes at a very difficult time for Muslim Ontarians as we approach the two-year anniversary of the horrific London attack that claimed the lives of a Muslim family who were simply out for a walk. Despite the recurring cases of targeted and hate-motivated violence, the calls for help from faith leaders and community members, little has been done by the government to ensure safety and protection for this community. Time and time again, Muslim faith leaders and community members have called on the provincial government to take steps to tackle Islamophobia. New Democrats stand in solidarity with the Muslim community in calling on all levels of government to urgently act against Islamophobia."