In January 2010 Christian H. Hansen left Danish People’s Party after 12 years as MP for the party. He was dissatisfied that the party kept the heavy focus on immigrants and used a lot of time discussing a burqa ban in times of financial crisis and while Denmark was facing big trouble with securing a global deal on climate change at COP 15. In 2002 Denmark implemented one of Europe’s strictest laws of immigration in order to limit the possibilities for immigrants to settle in Denmark. Christian H. Hansen thinks the goal is achieved and that it is now time to turn to other challenges. He has therefore founded the new political party ‘Fokus’ (which means focus). The party’s key issues are health care, energy and climate change issues, and animal well-being.
The European rabbinical umbrella organization “Conference of European Rabbis” (CER) boycotted an interfaith conference in Belgium after it was determined that Muslim delegates included alleged members of the Muslim brotherhood movement. The meeting, co-hosted by the European commission and the European Parliament, took place in Brussels on Monday of this week. The interfaith meeting was intended to bring together four religious leaders from each participating faith community. In a statement explaining the decision not to attend the meeting, the executive director of the CER said: “We do not consider it appropriate for organizations such as the Federation of Islamic Organizations in Europe, or individuals who made or endorsed anti-Semitic statements and who are clearly linked to radical Islamist movements such as the Muslim Brotherhood to be present.” These invitees, according to the CER, are “extremists who are not representative of the vast majority of Europe’s Muslim citizens.” The statement noted that the interfaith initiative was a positive one, but that it was undermined by the inclusion of some persons who are more interested in divisiveness than dialogue. The European Commission said that the decision was regrettable, as president Jose Manuel Barroso stated: “This meeting aims to foster dialogue and build on common ground, regarding the importance of this economic and financial crisis and we believe it is important to contribute. …It is time for unity and not for isolation on such an important topic.”
The religion-based system’s attitude to risk stands it in good stead compared to Western banks.
Islamic finance is set to be a big winner in the current financial crisis, BDO Stoy Hayward said today.
The financial advisor claimed that the religion-based system retains large amounts of money available to borrowers. This is in contrast to mainstream lenders, many of whom depend on inter-bank loans for revenue and have therefore been forced to make cutbacks due to the frozen money markets.
Invented in the mid-20th century by muslims looking for a system of finance that was in-keeping with the tenets of their religion, Islamic finance also has a radically different attitude to risk than other forms of banking. Commonly, the system works on a “risk-sharing” model. For example, Islamic insurance works by policyholders paying into and claiming from a central pool, which is used by all – in contrast to the common Western model. With usury from loans banned by Islam, the leverage – or, more simply, the amount of money owed – by Islamic financial institutions also tends to be lower.
Speaking to FT Advisor Dan Taylor, head of banking at BDO Stoy Hayward, explained: “As the risk profile of Islamic Banks is generally lower than conventional western banks, this presents a more solid option for both retail and institutional investors and suggests that dealings with Islamic financial institutions will grow dramatically as people switch to more secure products in this environment.
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The Belgian Muslim Executive hopes for a quick solution to the delay in the 2008 subsidies. Minister of Justice Jo Vandeurzen announced the delay the need to wait for reliable information about the financial situation of The Executive. Coskun Beyazgul, president of the Muslim Executive, says that they are in a financial crisis, and that he has hope that a solution would be found quickly. The Executive has no other means of income other than the Justice ministry subsidies, which are needed to pay rent and employees.