June 14, 2013
No one comes to mind more quickly in the cause of Islam: for both institutional and foreign students in Brescia than the case of Anas El Abboubi (a recently discovered extremist living outside of Milan)
Yet, the word “Islam,” today in Brescia’s city of Vobarno, as well as in Niardo a few months ago jumped out. If for no other reason than to understand what moves a twenty year old to take the lead in extremist ideas.
And, in an attempt to give an answer, the word “discomfort”, yesterday, was the most invoked. A discomfort caused by a lack of integration seen in the classroom, where Anas was showered with insults and curses by his companions. A discomfort that he would find an outlet in Islamic radicalism and jihadism, as understood by Roberto Tottoli.
“Mah .. Even I, when I worked at the factory, I was always called Taliban or Saddam Hussein: I was certainly displeased, but I never thought to kill anyone. It occurs to me that the boy has been manipulated” says Sajad Shah of the Islamic Association Muhammadiah.
“These are isolated cases, it is true, but it should give us pause. The violence must be condemned and prosecuted, but at the same time, we must take action to prevent it: It is important that Italian institutions understand that mosques are important, because it is there that young people are educated to peaceful coexistence with civil society and to channel their energies towards true and noble ideals.” Said Meghras, the former president of the Federation of Islamic Lombardy.
The President of the Lombardy region, Roberto Maroni, is now “open” to the possibility of having a Mosque in Milan. One of the main critics of a construction of a mosque, Maroni now states that he is open to a Mosque, as long as a mosque “respects Italian culture, our traditions and history.” Roberto Maroni made these statements as part of a larger discussion celebrating the edict of Constantine in 313 and in anticipation of the arrival of the Patriarch in Italy on May 14. The Cardinal Angelo Scoula and the Mayor of Milan, Giuliano Pisapia, also confirmed their support of the Mosque.
According to the findings from the investigation, the group had close contacts with prominent members of international terrorist cells. This cell was characterized by a fierce anti-Semitism and a bitter dislike of “infidels,” such as citizens of the United States and Italy. The investigation also brought to light audio-visual pieces and documents used to proselytize and indoctrinate of new members. Even including a call to jihad and suicide bombings in the West and in war zones.
Those arrested include former imam of a southern Italian mosque in Andria, Hosni Hachemi Ben Hassen, who was considered the head of the cell. Stopped in Brussels, Ben Hassen is married to a woman who converted to Islam in Andria which is in Puglia. A call center was deemed the basis for the recruitment of followers and coordination center for possible terrorist actions outside the Italian territory.
Ben Hassen, 45, Tunisian, had connections and relationships with prominent members of international terrorist groups, including Essid Sami Ben Khemais, Ben Yahia Mouldi Ber Ben Ali and Mohamed Rachid, who have already been convicted of terrorist offenses. Ben Hassen intended to make continuous proselytizing and indoctrination materials designed to train new recruits.
Besides Ben Hassen, the other men arrested included Mohsen Hammami, 48, who currently resides in the municipality of Scorriton, in the province of Catania, Ifaoui Nour, 34 years old, homeless, living in Sicily, and Romdhane Ben Chedli Khaireddine, 32, homeless, living in Lombardy. All of the offenders are Tunisians.
In Milan, a woman, 6 months pregnant, was injured by her husband with an iron. Their children called the neighbours who phoned the police immediately. The man has been arrested on charges of aggravated assault and family maltreatment. It is not the first time that the woman has been brought to hospital as a consequence of her husband’s violence. Despite this, in the past she always refused to denounce the man. http://ilgiorno.ilsole24ore.com/milano/cronaca/2010/06/11/344180-picchia_moglie.shtml
A boom of foreigners in Italy: 1 out of every 9 Muslims is an entrepreneur
The Regional (Lombardy) Observatory for Integration and Multiethnicity (ORIM) has made public that in Lombardy the number of Muslim entrepreneurs or those who are self-employed varies between 10,000-11,000, of which 55-60% reside in Milan. Thus, in Lombardy there is 1 entrepreneur/self-employed person out of every 12 Muslims, with a maximum in the city of Milan, where 1 out of 9 Muslims is an entrepreneur/self-employed.
The director of Rome’s Grand Mosque is urging mosques across Italy to hold their Friday prayers for the victims of the devastating earthquake in central Italy, which killed at least 278 people, injured several thousand, and left around 28,000 homeless. “I am asking the imams of all of Italy’s mosques to follow our example and to organize prayers for the victims of the earthquake that has struck Abruzzo,” said Abdellah Redouane. “It is important for Muslims to show solidarity with the earthquake victims and demonstrate their wish to contribute to the greater good of society,” Redouane added.
Mosques in the southern Puglia region, Tuscany, northern Veneto, and Lombardy regions have taken up Redouane’s appeal. Italy’s Union of Islamic Communities stated that it is ready to help survivors of the earthquake, by donating blood and coordinating with aid efforts.
The president of the organization, Mohammed Nour Dachan, added that the UCOII is collecting funds for victims, and accepting donations in mosques across Italy. “Everything that will be collected at mosques in Italy will be given as charity for the victims of the quake in Abruzzo,” said Dachan. “We feel very close to the joys and pains that affect our country,” said Dachan, who is also the imam of the central Italian city of Ancona’s mosque. Dachan added that despite religious difference, all a part of a “big family” that experiences tragedy together.
A multi-faith football (soccer) league has been recently organized by an Islamic Center in the city of Milan. The league intended to see several teams vie for the “mosque cup” in the Milan stadium. Eight teams from across the northern Lombardy province completed in a one-day competition organized by the mosque. The initiative is part of celebrations marking the 20th anniversary of its Al-Rahman mosque – the first mosque built in Italy. Teams represented local mosques, Catholic churches, and one team was comprised of inter-faith members.
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A mosque in the small city of Abbiategrasso, near Milan, has been the target of a recent assault – the eighth in the region of Lombardy. A man was seen throwing a Molotov cocktail into the courtyard of the mosque. No major damage or injuries are reported from the attack.