Hundreds of Muslims formed a human shield around the main Jewish synagogue in Oslo on Saturday, in a symbolic protest against an attack on a synagogue in Denmark last weekend.
Pictures emerged of nearly 1000 Muslim men and women linking hands and forming a chain around the venue and chanting “No to anti-Semitism, no to Islamophobia”.
Protest organizer Zeeshan Abdullah said: “Humanity is one and we are here to demonstrate that”.
“There are many more peace mongers than warmongers. There’s still hope for humanity, for peace and love, across religious differences and backgrounds”, Mr Abdullah added.
The protest, which was also attended by dozens of native Norwegians, was in response to a gun attack on a synagogue in Copenhagen last Saturday.
Omar Abdel hamid El-Hussein, the Danish-born son of Palestinian asylum seekers, shot dead two people attending an event discussing free speech.
Zeeshan Abdullah, one of the protest’s organizers told a crowd of Muslim immigrants and ethnic Norwegians who filled the small street around Oslo’s only functioning synagogue.
Norway is home to about 1000 Jews as compared to nearly 200,000 Muslims.
The debate over immigration in the country came to the forefront in 2011 when Anders Behring Breivik killed 77 people and accused the government and the then-ruling Labour party of facilitating Muslim immigration and adulterating pure Norwegian blood.
However, support for immigration has seen a sharp increase since that attack.
A recent opinion poll found that 77 percent of Norwegians thought immigrants made an important contribution to Norwegian society.
– Main image courtesy of Reuters