Young Muslims in Geneva

2 November 2010

Religion does not constrain friendship for a number of young Swiss students at the University of Geneva. In the case of Karim, a Muslim, and Flavio, who is Catholic, religion and culture are to be respected and recognized, but in no way pose any problems. For Karim, Flavio is someone with whom he has more in common than someone with whom he might have attended Arabic school since childhood, while Flavio sees nothing wrong with waiting at the door while Karim’s mother or sister puts on a headscarf if he comes to visit.
Similarly for Shaimaa, who is Muslim, and Emmanuelle, who does not practise any religion, but comes from a Christian family, their differences are seen rather as something which enriches their relationship. Aside from exchanging Egyptian cookies and Christmas biscuits, they consider the values and cultural background that both have grown up with as important elements to respect and preserve.