Friday 20 October 2017

Muslim businessman hits back at 'sick people' who handed out hate leaflets ahead of refugees arrival

The Abbeyfield Hotel, Ballaghaderreen
The Abbeyfield Hotel, Ballaghaderreen

Cian Murray

A Muslim businessman, who has been living and working in Ballaghaderreen for over 10 years, has described people who handed out hate leaflets in the Co. Roscommon town as 'sick'

Approximately 200 refugees are to be housed in what was the Abbeyfield Hotel on the outskirts of the town over the next two years. On Saturday last, a small group of people handed out leaflets in the centre of the town.

According to the local reports, this literature contained references to Islamic State and Al Qaeda and urged locals to “preserve freedom in the West” by refusing Muslims entry into Ireland.

It also incited violence by suggesting that we “crush them once and for all”.

Sajjad Hussain is a Muslim man who runs a barbers n the town. He believes this sort of attitude is not held widely within the local community.

Speaking to Independent.ie, he said: "They made up their own story. They made up their own history based on a lot of hate. I have been running a business for 10 years in the town and I have never experienced this.

"I run the barbers in the town and I am dealing with people everyday. The people of this town are good people."

He dismissed the leaflets as "silly" works of fiction, adding: "It is only one or two people  - sick people - doing this, saying about Muslims that these are the bad people and stuff like that. They made up their own story that has nothing to do with islam.

"It is trying to give the image that these are the bad guys and we should finish them before they do something to us. The leaflets were silly."

Around 80 Syrian refugees will arrive in the town later this month.

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