Hate crimes against Jews and Muslims on the rise – Trump blamed

Hate crimes are increasing in the US. While racial attacks make up the majority of these crimes, American Jews and Muslims are the targets of an explosion in crimes against religion, according to the FBI’s new 2015 Hate Crime Statistics report.

Each year the report collates hate crime statistics from law enforcement agencies across the country.

Its aim is to help provide an accurate accounting of the problem, by state and nationally.

President-elect Donald Trump said he was “very surprised” to hear about them during a US “60 Minutes” interview on Sunday.

“I hate to hear that. I mean, I hate to hear that,” he said.

Trump has been accused of fostering racism, xenophobia and Islamophobia.

This view is fueled by his promises to restrict immigration, deport Mexicans, and register Muslims.

He has appointed Steve Bannon, boss of far-right Breitbart website as his chief White House strategist.

Breitbart openly attacks women, Muslims and African-Americans and Jews.

The FBI says the increase in hate crimes began before the 2016 election campaign started.

The report shows crimes against Muslims rose by 70% from 178 in 2014 to 301 in 2015.

The report also records 664 incidents (a 9% increase) against Jews and Jewish institutions “motivated by anti-Semitism” .

Jews and Muslims are banding together to support each other.

The Anti-Defamation League (ADL), which fights against antisemitism and bigotry is strongly condemning all anti Muslim incidents.

A US not-for-profit hate-attack monitoring group, the Southern Poverty Law Center has also been keeping records.

Group spokesperson Mark Potok says it has documented anecdotes of 437 cases of intimidation and abuse towards minorities since last week’s general election.

Potok said many anecdotes were linked to President-elect Donald Trump’s supporters.

Rizwan Jaka, a Muslim representative spoke on the same 60 Minutes programme as Trump.

She said the Muslim community in has faced a “roller coaster of challenges in the past 15 years, since the horrific attacks of 9/11[…]

“In 2015, over 75 mosques were attacked …Muslim women that are wearing the scarf are being taunted or harassed or threatened …”.

“And so we’re all concerned, and obviously there’s bigotry across the spectrum, across all demographics, and we’re concerned about it all”.


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