Construction work on a mosque being built next to an ancient church in Rome has been halted by the police. However, it looks like the stoppage is temporary, and based on a technical violation of the building permit. Or maybe a failure to bribe the right official…?
Anyway, according to Adnkronos International:
Police in Rome have halted the construction of a new controversial mosque because of irregularities with building laws.
“Certain rooms were being enlarged and a partition wall knocked down without authorisation”, police officer Carlo Buttarello was quoted as saying by Rome-daily, Il Messaggero.
But Rome’s city council manager for security, Jean-Leonard Touadi, said the stoppage was temporary, and it “just needs for regulations to be respected”, for work to resume.
The site for the planned mosque whose opening was scheduled for 7 September, is adjacent to the Roman Catholic Church of San Vito in Rome’s multi-ethnic Esquilino neighbourhood.
The mosque’s location next to a Christian site and concern with Islamic extremism associated with some Muslim centres in other parts of Italy including Milan has incensed those opposed to its construction.
But Touadi dismissed the criticism.
“Rome, the city which hosts the Vatican and the largest mosque in Europe… cannot and must not fear a new place of worship which instead must be guaranteed”, he was quoted as saying by Il Messaggero.
Ah yes, we must guarantee the new place of worship — and our own dhimmitude as well.
“The premises on Via San Vito 12, right next to the Church of San Vito are being refurbished in these days in time for the opening on 7 September,” Mustafa Kamal who heads the Hil Ful Fuzul Social Organization Onlus, which is supervising the mosque’s construction, told Adnkronos International (AKI).
Sheikh Ubeidulhaqq, a prominent Muslim cleric who serves as prayer leader or imam of the Beit al-Mukarram mosque in Bangladesh’s capital Dhaka, is expected to attend the inauguration ceremony.
The Mosque’s opening will take place on a Friday, Islam’s traditional day of prayer.
The Hil Ful Fuzul Social Organization Onlus which operates as a non-governmental non-profit organisation, was formed in May this year to help Muslim immigrants in Rome, especially in the city’s Piazza Vittorio area, where the new Mosque will be located.
Hat tip: Oriana.