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Wed 7 Nov 2018 07:41 AM

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First two Muslim women elected to US Congress

Rashida Tlaib, a social worker born in Detroit to Palestinian immigrant parents and Ilhan Omar, a Somali refugee, both Democrats were elected to Congress

First two Muslim women elected to US Congress
Ilhan Omar, a Somali refugee, won a House seat in a heavily-Democratic district in the Midwestern state of Minnesota

US voters elected two Muslim women, both Democrats, to Congress on Tuesday, marking a historic first in a country where anti-Muslim rhetoric has been on the rise, American networks reported. 

Ilhan Omar, a Somali refugee, won a House seat in a heavily-Democratic district in the Midwestern state of Minnesota, where she will succeed Keith Ellison, himself the first Muslim elected to Congress.

Rashida Tlaib, a social worker born in Detroit to Palestinian immigrant parents, won a House seat in a district where she ran unopposed by a Republican candidate. 

The two politicians will increase the total number of Muslims in the House to three. Congressman Andre Carson, who is Muslim and African American, won re-election in his safely-Democratic district in the state of Indiana. 

The electoral milestone is in stark contrast to the rise in anti-Muslim sentiment around the country. 

The Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR) reported a 21 percent increase in anti-Muslim hate crimes in the first six months of 2018.