‘Disgusting and sinful’ new mosque blasted by Turkey

‘Disgusting and sinful’ new mosque blasted by Turkey

Last month we reported on the opening of a mosque with a difference in Germany by Turkish women’s rights activist Seyran Ates, above, who set out to create an inclusive space in which where men and women – and even members of the LGBT community – could pray together.

There was to be no hate preaching at the progressive Ibn-Rushd-Goethe mosque. And burqas and the like would be prohibited.

Outrage soon followed, and it’s since been reported that the Berlin mosque’s opening has further strained already-tense relations between Germany and Turkey.

Turkey’s religious affairs agency Diyanet slammed the mosque, saying that its practices:

Do not align with Islam’s fundamental resources, principles of worship, methodology or experience of more than 14 centuries, and are experiments aimed at nothing more than depraving and ruining religion. We are convinced that all fellow believers will keep their distance from such provocations.

German officials are reportedly “very surprised” by Diyanet’s stance. German Foreign Ministry spokesman Martin Schäfer defended one of Germany’s fundamental rights:

I want to be very clear in rejecting all comments that clearly intend to deprive people in Germany of their right to freely exercise their religion and to limit the right to free expression of opinion.

Diyanet and a number of pro-government newspapers in Turkey went further, linking the mosque to US-based cleric Fethullah Gulen, above, and his supporters, whom the Turkish government blames for a failed military coup in July 2016. Turkey wants him returned from America to face prosecution.

Ates said that she never expected to be accused of working alongside Gulen.

It’s getting more and more ridiculous. It’s no longer a religious matter, it’s about [Turkish President Recep Tayyip] Erdogan and his aim to oppress progressive, liberal Turks,.

The mosque offers a platform for female imams like Ani Zonneveld, from the US, who gave the call to prayer for the mosque’s inauguration. House rules state that female visitors must not wear full-body garments like the burqa or niqab, as it “would only send a political statement.”

While liberal Muslims who feel restricted by mainstream Islam cherish Ates’ project, conservative worshipers have expressed outrage, calling it “disgusting and sinful”, as it “disrespects the key elements of Islamic faith”.

Egypt’s Dar al-Ifta al-Masriyyah, a state-run religious authority, issued a “fatwa” or official decree labelling the mosque an “attack on Islam.”

The Egypt-based Al-Azhar, the most prestigious Sunni institution in the world, said the mosque was:

A religious innovation that is not approved by Islamic Sharia.

Not surprisingly, Ates is receiving death threats, but she vows that she’ll continue to fight for her cause.

I receive hundreds of death threats every day. I rely on personal protection, but I will continue to stand up for my organisation. Islam needs a change, and together with our supporters across the world we can make a difference.

15 responses to “‘Disgusting and sinful’ new mosque blasted by Turkey”

  1. Brummie says:

    A brave woman.

  2. barriejohn says:

    What “failed military coup”? Much as I normally abhor conspiracy theories, that event seemed suspicious from the very start. I think Stormart is reliable (unless anyone knows different!):

    Other analysts say the same elsewhere.

  3. sailor1031 says:

    @Barriejohn: agreed. It was obvious from the start that Erdogan’s coup was an inside job but of course probably wouldn’t be obvious to a numpty like Stoltenberg, whose form in matters political is unimpressive to say the least.

    When last I looked the list had grown from 1,600 to around 40,000. That’s evidence enough right there that there was no coup – how do you maintain a coup with 40,000 conspirators? The wehrmacht couldn’t do it with just a few dozens….

    It is obvious that Erdogan would like to restore the old Ottoman Empire, at least in part, with himself as the new Suleiman, which is why he is interfering all over the ME. It remains to be seen if he will be as “tolerant” of people of the book as the original empire allegedly was.

  4. Trevor Blake says:

    “its practices Do not align with Islam’s fundamental resources, principles of worship, methodology or experience of more than 14 centuries.”

    Diyanet is correct. So much for 14 centuries of mean spirited ghost stories and violence.

  5. barriejohn says:

    @Sailor1031: Some politicians seem to have a blind spot where Turkey is concerned.

    Trevor Blake: I think that translates as “We want to put the clock back 1400 years”. Would they say the same of science, technology and medicine, especially if they contracted cancer, for example?

  6. ZombieHunter says:

    people are so focussed on trump and putin right now and we need to be paying as much attention to Erdogan, he really is one to watch.

  7. Paul says:

    (Islam for )….”more than 14 centuries…….. depraving and ruining religion.”

    Some proponents of Islam seem quite capable of doing that without her help.

  8. Henry says:

    Erdogan is going to drag his country and its neighbours allies and enemies into a bloody war. It will make Syria look rather tame. He is a dangerous nasty evil man … a wannabe big boss of the caliphate. What a combination … a shameless liar, a ruthless psychopathic politician and fundamentalist islamofacist.

    And in my view all mosques are disgusting. As Hitchens put it … they are “Incubators of Islamic Terrorists”.

    Islamism is going drag the world into WWIII. It will be a bloody affair. Muslims will be the loosers and muslim countries will be reduced to piles of shattered smoking rubble. Then muslims will finally understand that allah is not worth the millions of dead.

  9. L.Long says:

    1st..WE ARE NOT IN TURKEY!!!! you pin headed little dimwitted male!!!!
    2nd…Show me in the karan where all that women hate is located. You cultural customs are of no importance..see one above!

  10. […] Diyanet was most recently in the news for condemning a progressive mosque in Germany. […]

  11. StephenJP says:

    This is a brave woman. Good luck to her. It seems that the German authorities are likely to support her.

    It appears that, for Erdogan, Gulen is playing the same part as “Emmanuel Goldstein” did in Orwell’s 1984: an all-purpose enemy, on whom anything can be blamed, including the crimes and mistakes of the government of the time. Very convenient, if you can get away with it. I hope that Erdogan can’t.

  12. Paul says:

    Stephen JP
    Erdogan already has and he will continue to (‘get away with it).
    When first elected he actually was ‘for the people’, but now like all Turks before him in this position, and I mean all of them, it’s about making millions upon millions of money through corruption.
    It’s really that simple. And he has the country exactly where he wants it.

  13. leftwingwilly says:

    People are sheep; they need a shepherd to guide them and any asshole will do. Don’t think, follow. Fourteen centuries of stupidity can only lead to 14 centuries of more. Humanity has wallowed in the foul stench of religion so long it loves the smell. The more it stinks, the closer heaven seems. Hence, having your head up your ass (or arse) becomes pure bliss.

  14. barriejohn says:

    Erdogan’s had enough of the EU’s “insincerity”. He now wants a deal with the UK!