By John Giacalone
May 20, 2013
Prayer at Palasharp 250×149 complex might make it a mosque? Funding is ready from Qatar and others. Qatar Holding has officially announced the purchase of 40% of Porta Nuova, the real estate development plan of more than two billion euro currently under construction in the city’s center, the complex is about 290 thousand square meters. The remaining 60% will continue to be held by the current sponsor, the Texan group Hines. The Qatari holding company is, in fact, known to have holdings ranging from Porsche to Harrods, from Credit Suisse to Paris Saint Germain and has recently supported some of the most famous hotels .
Will the PalaSharp soon be turned into a mosque? There are also rumors of possible funding by private individuals from Qatar and Kuwait, supporting the transformation of the Palasharp Lampugnano, which could become the first large mosque in Milan. The PalaSharp has been used as a place of prayer for many Muslims on Fridays, many of them from the Islamic Cultural Institute in Viale Jenner that could not accommodate all the faithful so many were forced to pray on sidewalks adjacent to the Islamic center, thus creating problems for the circulation and commercial activities.
Milan has no mosque. The fact that Milan still has no large mosque despite the large presence of Muslims in Lombardy (340,000 according to some estimates, but probably more) is inexplicable. It is permissible to ask the question: given that funding most often goes hand in hand with political and ideological conditioning, is it healthy for Italian Muslims to take advantage of funds from abroad, particularly from countries where there is an interpretation of Islam that is ideologically closer to positions that would be out of place in Italy?
The Italian Islamic communities, as such, should be free from external influences in order to foster an Islam that can thrive in harmony within the Italian socio-cultural context, thus facilitating the integration process?