Brent Council has adopted the all-party parliamentary group (APPG) definition of Islamophobia and reiterated its commitment to combatting all forms of discrimination.

It unanimously passed a motion at a full council meeting last night (July 8) as part of a stand against anti-Muslim behaviour in the borough and beyond.

Cllr Ahmad Shahzad – a member of the Brent Muslim community – moved the motion, which formally recognised the APPG’s working definition of Islamophobia.

This notes that “Islamophobia is rooted in racism and is a type of racism that targets expressions of Muslimness or perceived Muslimness”.

Examples of Islamophobia include expressing a desire to harm or kill Muslims and holding all Muslims accountable for the actions of a single Muslim or a Muslim-majority state.

Cllr Shahzad said: “Adopting this motion will convey that Brent is a truly diverse, multi-religious and multi-cultural society.

“A borough that cares about and respects all of its residents. We have already made a stance to help and protect all our communities.

“It is heart-breaking to see any form of hatred take hold against Muslims and other religions.”

He said nobody should have to live in fear but that this is the case for some communities in the borough.

“It is about time that we stand up and convey the message that we are no longer going to tolerate racism,” he added.

The motion was supported by Jewish councillor Neil Nerva who expressed “solidarity” with Muslim residents and urged politicians not to engage in “whataboutery” when it comes to opposing hate crimes.

“We fight Islamophobia where there is Islamophobia, we fight anti-Semitism where there is anti-Semitism and we fight misogyny where there is misogyny – we have to be explicit about all and stated about all,” he said.

Brent Council also follows the International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance’s working definition of anti-Semitism, which is included in councillor and employee codes of conduct.