Ethnic Affairs Minister Calls on New Zealanders to Offer Support to Muslim Community After Backlash

July 11, 2005

Source: Scoop

On July 11, 2005 Scoop ran a press release issued by the New Zealand government that reported, "Ethnic Affairs Minister Chris Carter is calling on all New Zealanders to offer their support and concern to Auckland’s Muslim communities following attacks on six mosques last night. 'At times like this, it is important decent New Zealanders stand up and make it clear they will not hold innocent Muslim families responsible for the evil actions of terrorists on the other side of the world,' Mr Carter said. 'If we were to start holding religions responsible for crimes committed in their name, then no religion would be found innocent. I’m asking New Zealanders to put pen to paper, or tap out an email of support and send it on to our Muslim friends and neighbours. Foreign Minister Phil Goff and I attended a Muslim community meeting in Auckland today, and it was clear Muslim people are feeling hurt and vulnerable... I have spoken to Police Minister George Hawkins and asked him to encourage the Police to increase patrols around Muslim centres and mosques around the country. It would appear there is a sinister minority in New Zealand prepared to resort to witless vandalism to make a point. We need to protect innocent people from them.'"