Kuwait Civil Servant Chairman at Amsterdam’s Blue Mosque

28 May 2013

 

Newspaper Het Parool has reported that Mutlaq Alqarawi, a civil servant from the Ministry of Religious Affairs in Kuwait, has been appointed board chairman of the Blue Mosque in Amsterdam. He has been registered at the Chamber of Commerce as chairman of Europe Trust Nederland, the owner of the building which runs the mosque. Het Parool obtained minutes from a board meeting in August in which Alqarawi is named as mosque chairman. In the same minutes, Alqarawi pressed for the recruitment of Dutch converts to Islam.

 

Turkey: A fight for the soul of the new Turkey

{It is one of the most strategically important of nations – poised geographically, and symbolically, between Europe and Asia. But the tensions at the heart of Turkey are becoming increasingly severe. A fierce struggle is taking place between modernity and tradition, Islamism and secularism, democracy and repression. The outcome could have an explosive impact on us all} In Istanbul: Memories of a City, his mournful love letter to his hometown, Orhan Pamuk refers to the peculiar melancholy that haunts the grand buildings and dilapidated backstreets of the capital of the old Ottoman empire. He calls it ‘huzun’, a Turkish word that refers to spiritual loss or yearning. According to the Nobel Laureate, the monumental architecture and the little arches and fountains combine to ‘inflict heartache on all who live among them’. This, he writes, is because they ‘are reminders that the present city is so poor and confused that it can never again dream of rising to the same heights of wealth, power and culture’ of its glorious past. Reading these lines one wonders if it’s only coincidence that the city’s most famous landmark is known as the Blue Mosque.

Muslims Want to Pray in the Cordoba « mezquita »

Andalusian Muslims requested permission from Pope Benedict XVI to pray in the mosque-cathedral of Cordoba. Taking as an example the image of the pope praying in the Blue Mosque next to the Grand Mufti of Istanbul during his trip to Turkey, the Islamic Congress of Spain wrote to the Holy Father to ask him if Muslims could be authorized to pray, alongside Catholics, in the “mezquita”, the ancient Grand Mosque of Cordoba, which became a cathedtral seven centuries ago. The Muslim association specified in its letter that its objective was not to “appropriate this place but to honor it, with you and those of other faiths, as a unique ecumenical space in the world.”

Turkey: Pope Makes Turkish Mosque Visit

Pope Benedict XVI has visited one of Turkey’s most famous mosques in what is being seen as an attempt to mend relations with the Muslim community. During his tour of the Blue Mosque in Istanbul, the pontiff paused in silent prayer alongside senior Muslim clerics. It marks only the second papal visit in history to a Muslim place of worship.