Islamists across the world – both abroad and closer to home – are exploiting the Covid-19 crisis to pursue their extremist objectives and spread hate. Looking to take advantage of the uncertainties and insecurities brought on by this deadly virus, which we still know relatively little about, Islamists of different shades feel they have been given a boost.
This initially began with the peddling of the classic Islamist theory that viruses are a punishment from God. The fact that this new virus broke out in the Chinese city of Wuhan was used to push the narrative that for the systematic oppression of Uyghur Muslims in Xinjiang province.
Elsewhere, Salafists in the Middle East and North Africa labelled the new a ‘Soldier of God’ that was targeting disbelieving infidels who follow the . This is despite the fact that this supposed Soldier of God has now claimed the lives of people in Sunni-majority countries such as Turkey, Indonesia, Pakistan, Bangladesh and Morocco.