Zack Polanski speaking to Green Party volunteers

The Green Party has adopted the APPG Definition of Islamophobia, a definition developed by the All Party Parliamentary Group on Islamophobia and supported by the Muslim Council of Britain (MCB). The definition has been integrated into the party’s framework for ethics and conduct used internally within the party, including by disciplinary bodies.

Developed in 2019, the APPG definition has now been adopted by all major political parties other than the Tories in England. The MCB has repeatedly called for the Tories to be investigated by the Equality and Human Rights Commission (EHRC), with the organisation claiming that “Islamophobia is more prevalent in the Conservative Party than any other political party in Britain.”

The Green Party’s decision to adopt the APPG definition of Islamophobia follows the party’s adoption of detailed guidance on antisemitism in 2021.

The Green Party’s deputy leader Zack Polanski welcomed the move, telling Bright Green, “I’m really proud of the approach our party has taken to tackling antisemitism. I very much support the work being done to tackle Islamophobia in society – we are stronger when we stand together.”

The APPG definition is not without controversy. The Federation of Student Islamic Societies (FOSIS) has asked universities not to adopt it. FOSIS has raised carefully worded concerns that the definition focused too much on the race based aspect of Islamophobia at the expense of elements focused on discrimination and prejudice against aspects of Islamic practise.

Recognising this, the Green Party Regional Council – the body which formally adopted the definition – attached an addendum formally acknowledging this  and pledging to keep the section under review.

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Image credit: Rob Browne – Creative Commons