Members of Reading’s Muslim community have expressed their solidarity with the borough’s black citizens.
The statement, made by several groups including the Earley Association of Sri Lankan Muslims, responded to the killing of unarmed black man George Floyd in Minneapolis, America.
The group said: “The brutal killing of George Floyd… exposes yet again, the injustice and racism and discrimination still scarring the lives of black people across the world.
“For the Black and Minority Ethnic communities (BAME) it is a painful reminder of the parallel systemic racism we face here in the UK.
“Muslim Communities in Greater Reading (and far beyond) stand shoulder to shoulder with our black brothers and sisters in humanity and we condemn these inhumane police brutalities.”
The statement then goes on to cite messages from the last sermon of Prophet Mohammed, as well as acknowledging the sacrifice that BAME communities have made for their countries.
“Islam teaches us that: ‘A white has no superiority over black nor a black has any superiority over white; An Arab has no superiority over a non-Arab, nor a non-Arab has any superiority over an Arab, except by piety and good action’.”
They continue: “Structural and institutional discrimination breeds inequalities in health, education, employment, law enforcement and judiciary, impacting the life chances of Black and Minority Ethnic Citizens.
“This must stop. Enough is Enough.
“We stand in solidarity with the Black communities across Greater Reading, across the UK, across the US and all around the world. We demand governments and authorities take action to address the longstanding injustices faced by Black and Minority Ethnic communities in the UK. We demand action not words.
“We demand equality and equity, not favouritism. We demand justice and an end to institutional racism and discrimination.
“And we want it now.”