Muslim Chess Players victims of Islamophobia, Racism and Hate

Left to right: Ibraheem aged 10, Yusuf aged 13 and Ieysaa aged 7

Left to right: Ibraheem aged 10, Yusuf aged 13 and Ieysaa aged 7

A Muslim family representing England in the European Chess Championships in Austria have alleged that they have been the victims of racism, Islamophobia and hate.  13-year-old Yusuf Bin-Suhayl was attacked and left bleeding by the mother of a fellow English competitor.

The situation was so bad for the family that they required a police escort to their hotel and tournament.

Father, Sohale Rahman has made numerous complaints to the English Chess Federation but to no avail.

Throughout the competition the Rahman family who have three children representing England have been subjected to bullying and hate crime, according to Sohale. The youngest member of the family taking part is just 7-years-old.

Mother, Tomasina Contu, was spat on when she asked the father of one English competitor not to bully her son.

“It is of no coincidence that Tomasina wears a hijab,” said husband Sohale.

The problems seem to have started from when the family asked for halal meals for themselves.

Father Sohale Rahman said, “I cannot believe my family has been subjected to so much racism and Islamophobia and the English Chess Federation has just stood by and done nothing.”

When contacted the English Chess Federation said, “We are aware of certain allegations in relation to some members of the English delegation in a youth tournament in Austria,” and that they are taking the allegations, “extremely seriously.”

The ECF also confirmed the involvement of the Austrian police.

Sohale also alleges that even after paying for the trip adequate arrangements were not made for them and no halal food was provided.

“I was just told to change hotel and find a restaurant if I did not like it,” exclaimed Sohale.

The Islamic Human Rights Commission has taken up the campaign for the Rahman family saying that they want to see those responsible for Islamophobia, “brought to justice.”

Chair of IHRC, Massoud Shadjareh, said, “This is a shocking case of racism and Islamophobia and one that should not go unnoticed, the children are so young and should not be subjected to such hate.”

4 thoughts on “Muslim Chess Players victims of Islamophobia, Racism and Hate

  1. Unreal. Such an important story to bring forward. Chess is a game of intelligent and poise. I am furious parents are so cruel- not surprised though. They are passing on bigotry to their kids.

  2. This is so sad and frustrating. Chess is a game of brains not braun. I am disgusted by the parent’s complacency towards bullying. They are passing on bigotry to their kids. Endless cycle of hate goes on.
    Hope these beautiful, intelligent kids get a chance to cvontinue to love chess and thrive.

  3. Well it’s in Austria. It’s hardly surprising. The country has a history of anti-islamic movements and splinter groups. Some areas of the world just don’t have the brain power required to see everyone as human beings, let alone play Chess.

  4. I guess the racial discrimination is never necessary in most cases more especially to kids. Why don’t we just let them compete in chess and enjoy the games. It’s really something that is more worthwhile than bullying other kids.

    For more insights on chess you might want to visit

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