Thousands Of Muslims Prayed In Peaceful Protest On The Streets Of Brooklyn Yesterday

And New Yorkers of every creed supported their #BodegaStrike.

The stream of protests that have taken place since President Trump was sworn into office — the global Women's March; the emergency airport rallies and the subsequent demonstrations in public parks — is a testament to how democracy continues its work even after ballots are cast. On Thursday, New York City witnessed yet another protest of Trump's immigration policy, this time from a community known and beloved in neighborhoods across the five boroughs. 

More than 1,000 bodegas went on strike during the daytime as their Yemeni owners and workers took to the streets in protest. Yemen is among the seven predominantly Muslim countries that Trump has banned visitors from, a move that critics say is discriminatory and excessively harsh. 

Protestors numbering in the thousands gathered outside Brooklyn Borough Hall carrying American and Yemeni flags. Around mid-afternoon, they knelt outside the Hall in prayer in a remarkable sight captured by passersby and journalists.


Bodegas, mini convenience stores that dot most every block in the city, are typically run by minorities and are often considered integral to the city's makeup. Many New Yorkers expressed support for their local bodegas that participated in the strike.

The protest continued well after sundown, and bodega owners and workers resumed business after 8 p.m., when their strike ended.

Trump's executive order targeting immigrants and refugees was poorly conceived and hastily executed, critics say. Chaos in airports across the world broke out as people were detained at international airports in major cities and prohibited from getting on planes for their flights to the U.S. It has left foreign students and employees feeling unsure about their future in the U.S., and exacerbated Islamophobia in certain communities. 

But the deluge of protests in past weeks have laid bare the nationwide resistance to Trump's policies, and they are expected to grow. Before the strike on Thursday, Tarek Sulimani, a Yemeni bodega owner told Amos Barshad at The Fader:

I'm not only doing this for the Yemenis. I'm doing this because I believe in the American values. 


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