SYDNEY - Hours after a self-styled sheik and two of his hostages were killed in a gun battle in a Sydney cafe, inflaming anti-Muslim sentiment in Australia's biggest city, a social media movement showing solidarity with Australian Muslims was gathering steam.
Inspired by the Twitter hashtag "I'll ride with you," some commuters heading into the city for work on Tuesday gave their support to Muslims who might feel vulnerable amid concerns about a blowback after the hostage drama.
The hashtag was trending around the world, popping up across Asia, Europe, Africa and North America as it featured in more than 300,000 tweets. Actor Russell Crowe, who grew up in Sydney and keeps a home here, added his star power to the campaign.
Sydney is home to around half of Australia's 500,000 Muslims, with many traveling into the city for work from its western suburbs.