Mosque with 25-metre minarets to be constructed in Marseille

One of the largest mosques in France will soon find a home in the southern port city of Marseille, serving over 2,000 worshippers. The city’s mayor symbolically handed over the mosque’s key to Nordine Cheikh, commencing the start of renovation initiative. The mosque is expected to cost around eight million euro. Cheikh, the president of the association of the Great Mosque, expects that it will be ready to open in 2010. About one quarter of the city’s 800,000 residents are Muslims, of which around 40,000 are believed to be actively practicing – mostly with backgrounds veined in Algeria, Tunisia, and Morocco. There are already about 60 mosques in the city, though most of these are situated in old buildings, shops, and warehouses.