FIANZ Request Media To Exercise Responsibility And Respect Privacy
The Federation of Islamic Associations of New Zealand (FIANZ), as a national Muslim umbrella organisation, has been advised regarding the forthcoming arrival of a Muslim woman accompanied by her two children from Turkey. We understand that there is considerable media and public interest in this person, however we would kindly request that the media exercise due responsibility and respect the privacy of the individual and her two children, said Ibrar Sheikh, President of FIANZ..
FIANZ has also been advised that the individual in question has neither been charged nor convicted of any crime, either in New Zealand or overseas.
We are aware that in the past there have been misinformed hyperbole to characterise people in similar situations. We hope that a more balanced approach will be taken in this instance.
FIANZ is appreciative of the positive role played by Prime Minster Jacinda Ardern in making the Australian Government aware of their responsibilities in this regard. We fully support her decision which appears to have been made on the basis of both humanitarian grounds, as well as recognising NZ’s responsibility to its own citizens.
It is our hope that the media, politicians, political commentators and others maintain an awareness around the use of sensationalism and undue negative characterisation which has the potential to marginalise both vulnerable individuals and our community as a whole. Any suggestion of racism or Islamophobia should not be tolerated.
Our primary concern at this stage must be for the welfare of the children, and as such we trust that the media will exercise due care and compassion in their reporting.