The Center for Strategic Perspectives (CSP) at the Institute of Strategic Studies Islamabad (ISSI) organized a panel discussion on “Islamophobia And How To Deal With It?” on November 10, 2020. The panel of experts included: Dr. Todd Green, Associate Professor of Religion, Luther College, Iowa; Dr. Charles Powell, Director of the Elcano Royal Institute, Spain; Prof. Dr. Anis Ahmad, Vice Chancellor Riphah University, Islamabad; Prof. Dr. Samina Yasmin, Director, Centre for Muslim States and Societies, The University of Western Australia; and Mr. Ahmad Naeem Salik, Research Fellow, CSP-ISSI.
Introducing the panel and the topic of the discussion, Director CSP and Editor at ISSI, Mr. Najam Rafique said that phobia is a pathological anxiety disorder in which individuals experience extreme and irrational fear about certain situations. A new form of such phobia has now emerged based on fears about the religion of Islam and which has morphed into a phobia that we know as Islamophobia affecting the minds of many in western societies. The Director said that the way Muslims are being discriminated in the disguise of Islamophobia – a fear associated with both Islam and Muslims – is not just mere fear but a lethal form of racial discrimination. This type of racism which is being associated with religion is beyond comprehension. Everywhere, on media and other socio-political avenues, it is associated with everyday life of Muslims and does not bar the Islamophobes from retorting to violent actions like desecration and vandalizing mosques, burning the Holy Quran and profaning Prophet Muhammad (PBUH).