Imaanfest

A queer Muslim Pride fest is coming to London

Via Wikimedia Commons

The city of London, jewel of the United Kingdom, will play host to what’s being called the world’s first queer Muslim Pride festival, set to kick off this April 11, the Washington Examiner reports.

3 million Muslims call England home, including the mayor of London Sadiq Khan. A crowdfunding campaign launched by the LGBTQ Muslim charity group Imaan generated a full $20,000, enough to stage the event, which includes the usual music & food, as well as special performances, films and historical discussions centered on the queer Muslim identity. Alcohol will not be served at the festival, in keeping with Islamic traditions prohibiting drinking.

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“We have had to fight Islamophobia, Homophobia, Transphobia and Racism to get our voices heard and being part of this celebration is an opportunity to share the message that we are here, we are queer and some of us don’t drink beer!,” Asifa Lahore, a keynote speaker, said in an announcement. Other keynote speakers include filmmaker Amrou Al-Kadhi (writer of Little America: The Son) and activist Blair Imani.

Muslim Pride comes at a sensitive time for LGBTQ Muslims, who still face violence in the majority of Muslim countries, and who also face discrimination for their religion in the western world. In the UK, Prime Minister Boris Johnson has targeted both Muslim and LGBTQ people with hateful rhetoric.