Kerry: ‘Lack of integration’ of Muslims in Europe like U.S. civil rights struggle in ’60s

Kerry: ‘Lack of integration’ of Muslims in Europe like U.S. civil rights struggle in ’60s

Secretary of State John Kerry met with EU High Representative Federica Mogherini at the State Department Wednesday and afterwards addressed the press and took some questions. One question from a French reporter concerned problems with Muslim integration in Europe and the potential terrorism ramifications:

Question: [W]e heard recently from President Obama talking about the potential lack of integration of Muslim communities in Europe. He mentioned that as one of the greatest dangers that Europe faces in terms of terror threats that might come. Would you agree with those words from President Obama, and should he have used those? And Mr. Secretary, I’d like to get your opinion on that as well if I can.

Kerry responded by recalling his days as a college student in the 1960s during the civil rights era and the consequent sensitivity of his generation to “this question of minority and rights and integration and so forth.” After explaining that although the U.S. has made “unbelievable progress” on race-related matters, “we still have some distance to travel.” Eventually, Kerry stressed that “this particular incident of violence [terror attack in Paris] wasn’t a specific targeting that grew out of that [lack of integration]”; however, he said, there is work to do where “one minority or another or another is not able to share fully in the full integration” in the country where they live.

 

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