One of the UK’s top ranking universities has come under fire on social media for removing Muslim prayer spaces from their campus, Huffington Post UK reported on Friday.
Just a few days before Ramadan, Muslim students at the University of East Anglia (UEA) were told that their Friday prayer space, currently used by around 600 students and staff, will be converted into a corridor area.
Speaking to the Huffington Post UK, a university official said that there are ongoing discussions with the student's Islamic Society and the Muslim Chaplain over the move to “ensure we can provide appropriate faith provision on campus”.
Amid ongoing discussions on the matter and until a final solution is found, "Muslim students will have to use the multi-faith center on campus - a facility deemed 'insufficient' by the university’s own student experience committee two years ago."
UEA’s student Islamic Society said they were “shocked and appalled” by the announcement.
Dozens of Muslim students protested the decision by praying in the center of the Norwich campus on Friday.
They were joined by non-Muslim students who also spoke against the decision and expressed their solidarity with their Muslim colleagues by standing in a circle around the prayer spot and holding up banners that read #SaveOurSpace.
In addition to the protest, hundreds have been expressing their outrage at the decision and demanding that action be taken via the Twitter hashtag #SaveOurSpace.
Unity in the face of discrimination
Many are expressing outrage on social media
Others are sharing a petition demanding that action be taken
As news continues to circulate on social media, students launched a petition titled "Stop UEA from abolishing Muslim Prayer Spaces."
It has garnered more than 6000 signatures in less than three days, at the time of writing.