IHRC will launch a new Spinwatch report tomorrow exposing the role of state entities in Europe in spreading Islamophobia.
The report offers an analysis of the role and significance of the news media in disseminating anti-Muslim sentiment, detailing the political networks of which these organisations are part and analysing their relationship with political elites and social movements.
Spinwatch is renowned for its cutting-edge research into key social, political, environmental and health issues in the UK and Europe, investigating the way that the public relations (PR) industry and corporate and government propaganda distort public debate and undermine democracy. It has an enviable track record in exposing the hidden hands behind anti-Muslim and anti-Arab propaganda.
This report uncovers a very close relationship between the adoption of ‘Prevent’ style policies and the coverage in the press in each of five European countries examined with the role of the security state absolutely central to the way in which the media operates to provide the main impetus of the direction and tone of coverage.
While the politics and economics of the news media play an important role in spreading Islamophobia, a satisfactory account of the role of the media must include an analysis of the organised interests in society that shape news reporting. This report suggests that it is these organised interests that produce Islamophobic ideas – that they are, to adapt Stuart Hall’s classic terminology, the ‘primary definers’ to which the ‘secondary definers’ of the media stand in ‘structured subordination’.
The Spinwatch report will be unveiled on the fringes of the latest meeting of the United Nations Human Rights Council in Geneva at 3pm BST (you can watch the launch live here).
Also on the fringes of the UN meeting, IHRC is hosting a side panel meeting on the ongoing witchhunt against the Islamic Movement in Nigeria. Separately IHRC has submitted reviews to the human rights council on the human rights situations in France and Israel and delivered an oral statement on disappearances of people in different states.