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Despite lack of mosques, France to stop Muslims from praying in the streets

19 November, 2017 17:36
Despite lack of mosques, France to stop Muslims from praying in the streets

France strictly regulates religious expression, and building new places of worship for the 5 million Muslims is a controversial issue for the secular country.  After fighting between Muslim worshipers and French authorities in a Paris suburb, the interior ministry said the government would stop them from praying on the streets in the city. The residents of the multi-ethnic town of Clichy-la-Garenne have been protesting street prayers, contributing to rising tensions in the area.

According to reports, the local mosque in the area has been turned into a library, and Muslims have been praying on the streets since March in protest against the closure of their place of worship. The dispute has highlighted the shortage of mosques in France and Muslims have complained to the authorities that they do not offer suitable land for the building of Islamic centers.

“They will not have prayers on the street, we will prevent street praying,” Interior Minister Gerard Collomb told Questions Politics. Yet, he acknowledged the need for more mosques, saying: “Muslims must have a place to pray”. He promised to resolve the conflict in the coming weeks.

Earlier this month, right-wing French leader Remi Muzeau led a protest of around 100 individuals against street prayers in the country. The two warring groups faced off on the roads, with the Muslims chanting ‘God is great’ and the protesters singing the French national anthem. Muslims were able to continue their prayers after law enforcement personnel equipped with shields separated the two groups. France strictly regulates religious expression, and building new places of worship for the 5 million Muslims is a controversial issue for the secular country.

Source: The Express Tribune

Category : Islamic World News  |  
Despite lack of mosques, France to stop Muslims from praying in the streets
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