Wednesday, November 06, 2002

RELIGIOUS PREJUDICE IN SYDNEY

Last week a meeting in Sydney’s Western Suburbs heard a speaker talk about the impossibility of integrating Muslims into mainstream Australian society. The speaker, using a false name, claimed that Muslims are ”not a minority which can easily melt into Anglo-capitalist way of life”.
A spokesman for Auburn Council said its rules for renting the town hall were now under review. Leaflets and other publicity promoting the event did not disclose the conveners' name or address.

There is international data on the secretive group:
The Brussels-based International Crisis Group, headed by the former Australian foreign minister Gareth Evans, has warned of the growing reach and influence of [the group]

The group is organised in a "secretive and hierarchical pyramid ... made up of many five-person cells whose members, after they have completed training averaging about two months, form their own group", the ICG report said.
Membership is usually expanded directly through friends, family and relatives and, the ICG said, there was private regret among some members that they were not allowed to use violence to achieve their aims.

Surprisingly, there appears to be little reaction from the groups that would normally be expected to protest religion- and ethnically-based prejudice. Perhaps this article goes part of the way to explain the silence.

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