Now Mannheim is getting an Islamic mosque

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Written By Maya Cantina

MANNHEIM. There is strong protest from local residents against the “Islamic Workers’ Association” plan to build a mosque in the Käfertal district of Mannheim. The defense of the constitution had observed the community for years because it and its imams were said to have preached Salafist and Islamic statements and shared them on social networks.

Yet Mannheim’s mayor Christian Specht does not want to stand in the way of the project. During a citizens’ meeting he convened with 300 angry residents in February, the CDU politician welcomed the fact that the Federal Office for the Protection of the Constitution had now revised its assessment of the mosque association. He does not prevent the free exercise of religion. The participants, on the other hand, are concerned about their safety, as they repeatedly emphasized.

Specht and the Office for the Protection of the Constitution defend plans

According to Specht and SWR reported that since 2017 he had “noticed no Salafist-oriented events or appearances by well-known guest preachers.” The association’s board is said to have “credibly distanced itself from extremist ideas”.

The mosque is being built next to a building recently purchased by the Islamic Workers’ Association. A ‘Netto’ supermarket was previously rented on the ground floor, but the Muslims gave up their notice to establish their community center there. The club is already located in the Neckarstadt district. But due to the constantly growing number of believers, the rooms there have become too small, its representatives argue.

Mannheimers should be open to mosques

Association representatives said at the town hall meeting that they expected openness from their neighbors. The members of the mosque community are as much a part of Mannheim as any local resident.

An Afghan assassin carried out a terrorist attack on the anti-Islam civilian movement Pax Europa (BPE) in Mannheim on Friday. He killed a police officer and injured six BPE members, some seriously, probably for Islamic motives. Doctors were able to save the life of spokesman Michael Stürzenberger after seven stab wounds with emergency surgery. (fh)

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