Wales set to get its first Muslim assembly member

The Welsh nationalist party, Plaid Cymru, says that it is confident of winning support at May's devolved parliament elections that will bring the first Muslim assembly member in Wales.

Wales set to get its first Muslim assembly member

The Welshnationalist party, Plaid Cymru, says that it is confident of winning support atMay's devolved parliament elections that will bring the first Muslim assemblymember in Wales,where more than 22,000 Muslims live, according to a 2001 census.

Plaid officials believe that the party will win three additional constituencyseats and at least one extra list seat in South East Wales that would seeMohammad Ashgar elected after a narrow failure in 2003, the Western Mailreported.

Asghar, an accountant of Pakistani origin, also unsuccessfully stood in thelast elections to the British parliament in 2005.

The Cardiff-based National assembly for Wales was formed eight years ago,but no Muslim representatives were elected in the previous elections in 1999and 2003.

Last year, Plaid Cymru said it was seeking to win votes at the May electionsfrom anti-war opponents of Prime Minister Tony Blair's ruling Labor Party.

The Western Mail said the party is almost certain that it will repeat itsvictory in 1999 by winning 17 seats in the 60-member assembly and regainingfive seats lost in 2001.

Officials say the Plaid, who also has three MPs elected to the 646-seat Houseof Commons in London,hopes to break the Labor's monopoly on power in the devolved assembly.

According to a 2001 census, about 1,536,015 Muslims live in England and Wales, where they form 3% of thetotal population. In Scotland,the Muslim community represents 0.84% of the population (42,557) and about1,943 Muslims live in Northern Ireland.

Since the Sept. 11 attacks in the United States,and the deadly bomb attacks in London and Madrid, studies have shown that many Muslims in the U.S., UKand Europe are being unfairly targeted by thepolice and that the Muslim community is looked upon with suspicion.

However, this didn't hold back many Muslim immigrants who succeeded inestablishing themselves in Western countries, participating in the politicalprocess and setting an example to other Muslims who are struggling to live inthe West.

Source:Agencies

Güncelleme Tarihi: 20 Eylül 2018, 18:16
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