Tuesday Apr 13, 2021
WASHINGTON: US President Joe Biden on Tuesday conveyed his best wishes to the Muslim community in America and other parts of the country, condemning the attacks and prejudice that takes place against American Muslims.
In a statement published on the official White House website, Biden conveyed best wishes from him and his wife, Jill Biden, for the Muslim community around the globe as the month of Ramadan begins in the US.
Biden's message came on the eve of the fasting month, when all Muslims in the country perform the first Taraweeh prayers, or special prayers performed after the Isha prayer.
He started by recalling the difficult year America and other parts of the world experienced due to the coronavirus pandemic.
"In this pandemic, friends and loved ones cannot yet gather together in celebration and congregation, and far too many families will sit down for iftar with loved ones missing," he wrote.
He recognised the achievements of American Muslims, saying they "have enriched our country since our founding".
"They are as diverse and vibrant as the America they have helped build. Today, Muslims are leading in our efforts to fight COVID-19, playing a pioneering role in vaccine development and serving as frontline health care workers," he said.
"They are creating jobs as entrepreneurs and business owners, risking their lives as first responders, teaching in our schools, serving as dedicated public servants across the nation, and playing a leading role in our ongoing struggle for racial equity and social justice," added the US president.
However, Biden recognised that American Muslims continued to be targeted by hate crimes, bullying and bigotry. He said these attacks are wrong, adding that "they must stop".
"No one in America should ever live in fear of expressing his or her faith. And my administration will work tirelessly to protect the rights and safety of all people," he said.
Biden said he had, on his first day in office, ended the "shameful" Muslim ban and would continue to stand up for the rights of Muslims anywhere in the world.
The US president said he and his wife Jill were looking forward to resuming the traditional White House Eid celebration in person next year.