Canadian politician Jagmeet Singh was meeting with his constituents on Wednesday in Brampton, Ontario, when a woman stormed up to him and began to harass him.
Singh, a member of provincial Parliament and New Democratic Party leadership candidate who is Sikh, was just starting his “JagMeet & Greet” event when the unidentified woman rushed up and interrupted him. She began to yell at Singh about sharia law and the Muslim Brotherhood.
“We know you’re in bed with Sharia. We know you’re in bed with the Muslim Brotherhood. We know by your votes,” she said.
Although Sikhism is the world’s fifth-largest religion, followers are often mistaken for Muslims and subjected to Islamophobia. Part of that is due to the traditional turban head coverings that Sikh men, including Singh, wear as part of their faith.
During the encounter, the woman kept repeating herself as people in the audience began to get upset. When someone tried to speak to her, she yelled at the crowd not to touch her, saying she would call the police.
Singh remained calm, however, and spoke directly to the crowd.
“We don’t want to be intimidated by hate. We don’t want hatred to ruin a positive event,” he said. “Let’s show people how we would treat someone with love.”
And he began to chant his campaign slogan, “Love and courage.”
The woman, who said Singh had refused to answer her calls to his office, continued to ask when he would stop supporting sharia law. As she realized she was only going to be ignored, she got frustrated and ultimately decided to leave.
Watch the full encounter below.
Singh on Saturday night tweeted a statement regarding the incident, including an explanation of why he felt it important not to clarify to the woman that he is Sikh not Muslim.
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