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‘Screw ISIS’ – Seven Kings activist takes to the capital’s streets

PUBLISHED: 12:00 01 January 2016 | UPDATED: 09:31 04 January 2016

Activists Yasmin Yusuf, 16, Asha Abdi, 16, Tanisha Purewal, 17, Saamia Khatun, 16, Ayesha Khan, 16

Activists Yasmin Yusuf, 16, Asha Abdi, 16, Tanisha Purewal, 17, Saamia Khatun, 16, Ayesha Khan, 16

Archant

A group of teenage activists took to the streets to condemn ISIS.

Yasmin Yusuf, 16, from Seven Kings, who spent a day demonstrating in Oxford Street and Hyde Park, said she felt it was “important as a Muslim” to condemn the group publicly.

The six youngsters from Mayfield School, Pedley Road, Goodmayes, made “screw ISIS” and “you ain’t no Muslim bruv” posters and took to the streets.

“It went really well,” said Yasmin. “People were congratulating us. The response was amazing – people even took pictures with us – it was fantastic.

“As a Muslim I felt like I needed to do it. What these people [ISIS] are doing is wrong and I couldn’t sit here and do nothing about it.”

The young campaigner added that she felt like demonstrating not only because she is Muslim but “because I am human”.

The day, designed to dispel misconceptions about Muslims and combat Islamophobia, came in the wake of the November terror attacks in Paris, which ISIS claimed responsibility for.

It also comes in the wake of comments made by United States presidential hopeful Donald Trump.

On Twitter he said: “The United Kingdom is trying hard to disguise their massive Muslim problem.

“Everybody is wise to what is happening, very sad! Be honest.”

The billionaire businessman also called for a ban on Muslims entering the United States, sparking a petition to ban Mr Trump from entering the UK.

Yasmin, who said she has felt self-conscious about wearing a headscarf since the Paris attacks, said banning Mr Trump was not the answer.

“There are other means of tackling these issues,” she said.

“He has the freedom of movement and I don’t think we should ban him.”

The teenager urged others to make their voices heard as way of tackling Islamophobia and terrorist groups.

“It’s the best way,” she said.

“ISIS may have explosives but we have the weapon of freedom of speech.”


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