Student Council unanimously passes resolution in support of Muslim community after New Zealand shootings

The resolution comes after a vigil was held by the Muslim Students Association for victims of the shooting

The Muslim Students Association held a vigil March 18 in memory of victims of the attacks. Callie Collins | Cavalier Daily

Student Council’s Representative Body voted unanimously to pass a resolution in support of the Muslim communities of New Zealand, Charlottesville, the United States and the world during their general body meeting Tuesday. The resolution follows the terrorist attack in New Zealand March 15 when an armed gunman and white supremacist killed 50 people at the Al Noor Mosque and the Linwood Muslim Centre in Christchurch, New Zealand. 

The resolution also condemned a variety of anti-Muslim acts on Grounds, including “harassment, anti-Muslim flyering and chalking, Islamophobic vandalism in dorms, among other heinous and unacceptable incidents​.” 

Fourth-year Curry student Al Ahmed, who co-sponsored the resolution and is president of the Muslim Students Association, said the bill was a symbol of support from Student Council to Muslim students on Grounds and in Charlottesville. 

“These events continue to happen, and Student Council is a representative body obviously of some students on Grounds and in Charlottesville,” Ahmed said at the meeting. “So it would be good, a nice gesture, to show Student Council’s support to Muslim students here.” 

The Muslim Students Association held a vigil March 18 for the victims of the attack which was attended by over 100 community members, including University Dean of Students Allen Groves and University President Jim Ryan. The group also released a statement addressing the attack which has been signed in solidarity by nearly two dozen organizations and community leaders affiliated with the University, including Student Council, the University Judiciary Committee and Ryan.

“Our community is deeply saddened and hurt by this attack, and we would like to extend our most sincere condolences, thoughts, and prayers to our brothers and sisters in New Zealand,” the statement reads. “We stand in solidarity with the survivors who lost friends, family, and loved ones, and we ask God to grant ease, strength, and mercy to all those affected.”

Second-year College student Mazzen Shalaby, who also co-sponsored the resolution, added that the resolution was a direct response to widespread mistreatment of Muslims around the globe.

“Although the resolution is focused on New Zealand, we unfortunately can’t keep up with the horrible things that are happening,” Shalaby said. 

The resolution passed with a vote of 17 in favor, none opposed and one abstention by proxy. 

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