‘Hate will never win’ - Leeds hosts #LoveAMuslimDay events

UNITY:  From left, Abigail Marshall, Zenab Siddique and Sarah Warren. 3rd April 2018. 'Pictures:  Jonathan Gawthorpe
UNITY: From left, Abigail Marshall, Zenab Siddique and Sarah Warren. 3rd April 2018. 'Pictures: Jonathan Gawthorpe
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Leeds responded to hate the only way it knows how today (Tuesday, April 3) - with flowers of friendship and messages of hope.

Events were held in the city centre to counter hate letters sent to Muslims in the city - and across the country - in recent weeks.

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At Leeds Art Gallery, people gathered to mark #LoveAMuslimDay, a campaign started by Leeds man Shahab Adris as a direct response to the original ‘Punish A Muslim Day’ letter, but which has since gone viral itself.

Mr Adris said the simple idea was “to counter hate with love” and “bring communities together”.

Peace balloons were released at the gallery gathering, and there were performances from local artists, music and food.

In a separate event, members of Nisa Nashim, a friendship network of Muslim and Jewish women in Leeds, handed out ‘flowers of friendship’ outside the Trinity Leeds shopping centre.

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Co-organiser Hilary Curwen said around 200 flowers were distributed and lots of people stopped to chat and share stories, despite the rainy weather.

Meanwhile #LoveAMuslim Day has been trending across the world on social media.

Otto English wrote on Twitter: “On behalf of your friends, neighbours, loved ones fellow Britons and just for the sake of decency, get this trending rather than the foul and revolting alternative. #LoveAMuslimDay.”

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Jewish and Muslim Women from Nisa Nashim handing out Flowers of Friendship to the public in Leeds City Centre. Saher Tariq hands out flowers.  3rd April 2018.  Pictures:  Jonathan Gawthorpe

Jewish and Muslim Women from Nisa Nashim handing out Flowers of Friendship to the public in Leeds City Centre. Saher Tariq hands out flowers. 3rd April 2018. Pictures: Jonathan Gawthorpe

Jewish and Muslim Women from Nisa Nashim handing out Flowers of Friendship to the public in Leeds City Centre. From Left, Coun Salma Arif, Hilary Curwen, Saher Tariq and Elana Flegg.

Jewish and Muslim Women from Nisa Nashim handing out Flowers of Friendship to the public in Leeds City Centre. From Left, Coun Salma Arif, Hilary Curwen, Saher Tariq and Elana Flegg.

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