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Jo Cox was working on report on anti-Muslim attacks before her death

Jo Cox

Jo Cox, the MP who was killed outside her constituency office on Thursday, was going to warn of an increase in anti-Muslim attacks – particularly against women – it has emerged.

She was planning to address parliament later this month to introduce a report she had been working on with the Islamophobia watchdog Tell Mama (Measuring Anti-Muslim Attacks), the group’s director said. The study is expected to conclude that there were about 80% more attacks on Muslims in Britain in 2015 than the year before.

“She met us to talk about how people could report attacks; particularly women in her constituency,” said the founder and director of Tell Mama, Fiyaz Mughal, on Sunday.

The report is the latest in an annual series on the prevalence of Islamophobic attacks. “We were hoping she would highlight the impact on Muslim women; particularly given the targeting [that exists],” Mughal said. “The majority [of incidents] at street level were [on] women and she was going to raise that.”

He added that the study was based on data from his organisation and three police forces.

Mughal expects to conclude that Tell Mama saw 1,100 Islamophobic attacks in 2015 – an 80% increase on the previous year. The three forces reported a further 1,200, from which the watchdog had extrapolated to give a national estimate, he added. Mughal also said many attacks are never reported.

According to the Times, Cox recorded a video to use at the launch, in which she referred to “exciting” discussions she had held with Tell Mama’s staff. She says they talked about how she could help tackle Islamophobia and that the problem had become so bad in her constituency that “many of our young women don’t feel safe when they’re out on the street”.


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