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Yemeni bodegas boycott New York Post over shocking Ilhan Omar coverage

The newspaper attacked congresswoman Ilhan Omar over her comments on the September 11 attacks [Getty]

Date of publication: 14 April, 2019

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The Yemeni American Merchants Association called on thousands of New York City's bodegas to boycott the Rupert Murdoch-owned newspaper.
A number of New York corner-shop owners are refusing to sell copies of the New York Post, after the newspaper attacked congresswoman Ilhan Omar over her comments on the September 11 attacks.

The Yemeni American Merchants Association called on thousands of New York City's bodegas to boycott the Rupert Murdoch-owned newspaper, after it published a front cover on Thursday with an image of the flaming Twin Towers, captioned "Here's your something".

The Post's headline was in response to an address by Omar to the Council on American-Islamic Relations, in which the Minnesota Democrat described the 2001 terrorist attack on the World Trade Centre as "some people did something".

The Yemeni organisation said in a letter that it was outraged by the vile rhetoric against Muslims in the US, adding the front page "provoked hatred" and sought to "harm Omar".

The group said it was calling on "all Yemeni American bodega and deli owners" as well as "our community and allies across New York City" to boycott the sale and purchase of the Post. 

"This rhetoric threatens the safety and well-being of Omar, Muslim leaders, and the larger Muslim American community at a time when Islamophobia is at an all-time high," the association said.

The move has since been embraced by many shop owners in the city. New York-based activist Summer Nasser said her family-owned bodegas is boycotting the newspaper.

"The Yemeni American community once again makes a stance and aligns itself with integrity by boycotting the New York Post," Nasser told The New Arab.

"This newspaper has continuously used heinous and dangerous rhetoric against Muslims and minorities alike," she said.

"This paper does not represent the diversity of New York City," Nasser added. 

"Normalising racism is not a solution to our problems - and it has no place in our businesses."

Democratic Congresswoman Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez has also backed the effort. On Saturday night, she retweeted the call for boycott.

"Two years ago, Bodega owners across NYC (& cheered by neighbors) shut their shops citywide to protest Trump's #MuslimBan. Today, that same community is banding together to reject sales of the NY Post at bodegas citywide. This is what real unity (& NYC solidarity) looks like."

The association was established two years ago, in the wake of the Donald Trump's travel ban against Muslim-majority countries.

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