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Somali community moves Eid celebration to boycott Mall of America

Boycott of Mall of America in solidarity with Black Lives Matter Minneapolis
By staff |
July 16, 2015
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Minneapolis, MN - Hundreds of members of the Somali community will boycott the Mall of America on July 18, by moving their Eid Celebration. This Eid Celebration comes at the end of the religious holy month of Ramadan for the Muslim community.

The Mall of America has served as a destination for Somali families to celebrate Eid for many years. However, due to the Mall of America pursuing charges against Black Lives Matter demonstrators from a December rally at the Mall, some in the Somali community are set to boycott the Mall and go elsewhere for their Eid celebrations.

“It is critical the Somali community stand in solidarity with Black Lives Matter and the work they are doing for all Black people. The Somali community is not safe from state-sanctioned violence against Black people, such as police brutality, discrimination, or persecution based on faith, and we will work together to create an equitable future for all of us” said Ahmed Hirsi, event manager and community organizer.

The Somali community will host its own festivities outside of the Mall of America grounds. Ahmed Hirsi, along with other organizers in the Somali community, has planned an Eid Celebration to take place at the Brian Coyle Center in South Minneapolis. There will be food, games and childcare provided, and everyone is invited to celebrate with the Somali community on this day regardless of faith or background.

“In the state of Black Minnesota, the Black community routinely experiences the weight of oppression and the effect of discriminatory laws and policies. The only way for us to overcome these barriers is for native-born Blacks and our African-born brothers and sisters to work together and support each other. The Minneapolis NAACP is committed to working collectively with our African communities and providing support where needed,” said Nekima Levy-Pounds, president of the Minneapolis NAACP.

While the Mall of America has stated that they are no longer seeking restitution for lost revenue, overreaching prosecution and restitution for ‘police overtime’ are still being pursued by Bloomington City Attorney Sandra Johnson. Black Lives Matter Minneapolis demands they publicly ask Johnson to drop the charges.

“We have seen anti-Black racism against Somalis by the Mall of America and law enforcement in cases such as Hamza Jeylani and the MOA’s multiple excessive responses to members of the Somali Muslim community on their grounds, so it is imperative we are clear; this is a movement about all Black lives, in all of their manifestations and identities. We are fighting for the freedom and liberation of all of us, and to create that freedom and liberation we know we must fight together, to win together,” said Miski Noor of Black Lives Matter Minneapolis.