The Official Recognition of Flemish Mosques

When investigating the Islamization of Europe, it’s important to remember a major difference between organized religions in Europe and their counterparts in the USA. In the United States, the government has no role in funding or managing the affairs of religious organizations. The First Amendment of the Constitution specifies this condition, and advocates of secular orthodoxy have helped stamp out any possible connection between government and religion over the last few decades.

But Europe is different. Most European countries have an official state-funded religion. Modern tolerance has mandated official recognition and funding of other religions, and, since the Multicultural Age is upon us, that now includes Islam. National governments help fund the building of mosques and churches, and official state recognition is a necessity for any religion that hopes to proselytize successfully.

SIOE Belgium reports that the Flemish Minister of Integration has granted official recognition to six mosques in Flanders. The Vlaams Belang website talks about the same issue, and our Flemish correspondent ProFlandria has translated excerpts from the VB article:

VB youth demo23 Dec 2007 — On Saturday [22 Dec] the Flemish minister for Home Affairs, Urban Policy, Housing and Civic Integration [Inburgering en Binnenlands Bestuur] Marino Keulen granted official recognition to the first six mosques in Flanders. Recognition is still pending for another two mosques. Starting next year, the recognized mosques will be subsidized and the imams will receive regular pay.


The fact that one of the six recognized mosques is the Pakistani mosque Noor Ulharam built by the non-profit Antwerp Islamic Association… proves that the whole procedure for recognition was a farce. Towards the end of 1999, two of the administrators of the non-profit were compromised when a police investigation determined that that they had been involved in laundering large amounts of criminal funds. Zafar Ali Mughal and Javed Anwar both resigned from the non-profit in 2002. Construction on the Noor Ulharam mosque started in 2000; the mosque is 655 square meters [just over 7000 sq. ft.], three stories high, has two minarets, and is estimated to have cost 1 to 1.5 million Euros. In 2005 Noor Ulharam mosque appeared on the list of extremist and terrorist organizations of the Antwerp section of the federal police. The recognition file also reveals that the mosque uses a Pakistani-imported imam who does not know Dutch. [This imam,] Zia Sialvi, [is] a Salafist who until recently lived and preached in Lahore (Pakistan). Muhammed Zia Sialvi received his religious instruction in fundamentalist Islam schools (‘Ahl-as Sunnah wal Djama’ah’ school in Pakistan, as well as the school of fundamentalist Sheik Ahmed Kaftarou from Syria).

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Vlaams Belang is opposed to financing the mosques with Flemish tax revenues. After all, recognizing and financing mosques and imams facilitates the extension and reinforcement of an Islamic pillar which resists the integration of the persons of foreign origin [allochtonen] who live here. Moreover, Islam is not only a religion but a political ideology which is hostile to Western values such as democracy, freedom of expression and the equality of men and women. This is why Vlaams Belang takes the position that Flanders needs less, rather than more, Islam. Minister Keulen’s theory is wrong: supporting and financing Islam will not lead to the Europeanization of Islam, but to the Islamization of Europe.

Filip Dewinter will protest minister Keulen’s recognition decision regarding the Noor Ulharam mosque of the non-profit Antwerp Islamic Association to the State’s Council [Raad van State — a legal Ombudsman at the confluence of the Constitutional powers which resolves disputes that may arise from illegal administrative actions] because the conditions for recognition were not met.

Vlaams Belang is obviously not a neutral party in this discussion, so ProFlandria has also included a translation of an article from the Antwerp daily Gazet van Antwerpen:

5 Dec 07 — We have written it before: Filip Dewinter has already started his campaign for the 2009 elections [for mayor of Antwerp]. The whole thrust of the campaign is based on “Belgium Cracks Up” and “Stop the Islamization”. The tactics are clearly based on provocation. One example is organizing protests to provoke hard reactions from security forces or counter-protesters. Yesterday added a new element: a CD-single with an anti-mosque song, to be distributed in neighborhood pubs and on the internet.


Needless to say we don’t thank Filip Dewinter and VB for this new stunt [Gazet van Antwerpen has been an “establishment” paper for the last 10-15 years]. However, he has a point where the uncontrolled spread of mosques is concerned, at least in Antwerp. The city currently has 36 of these prayer houses, and that’s without counting the ‘garage mosques’. As long as there is a demand for this, we don’t see a problem. But we do have some serious questions concerning the controls on organizations that run these mosques. Do they work with non-Dutch speaking imams [breach of Belgium’s language laws] or imported imams from extremist countries? We don’t know. Some time ago the City Council had to assent to several recognition cases based on one meager information sheet per mosque. It is only logical, then, that apart from VB, several council persons of VLD/N-VA and Open VLD protested this state of affairs.

Especially the arrival of a new mosque on the Van Kerckhovenstraat [Noor Ulharam] appears questionable. The prayer house is an initiative of the Antwerp Islamic Association (AIA) which is mainly represented by Muslims from Pakistan and India. Several former administrators have a judicial past related to money-laundering and forgery. Is this expensive mosque possibly financed with tainted funds?

Even worse is AIA’s appearance on a list of fundamentalist Muslim meeting points, compiled by the federal police in 2005. As early as 2002 the police and the district attorney’s office stated in an investigation report: “Information from State Security and the Criminal Investigation Department reveals that Pakistani networks, which may possibly be linked to international terrorism, have established themselves in the Antwerp area.” AIA apparently also imported a non-Dutch speaking radical Pakistani imam to serve the mosque.

ProFlandria includes his own commentary on the issue:

I have to add something here that may be something of a surprise to American readers: in Belgium, the government can officially recognize religions which in effect provides government funding as well as regular pay to the religion’s “employees”. In effect, recognized religions (the Anglican, Catholic, Jewish, Orthodox, Muslim, and Protestant-Evangelical religions) in Belgium are subsidized with tax revenue.

I find it interesting, though, that in this case the minister of Flanders has seen fit to recognize individual mosques and their employees. I think the reason is that (as yet) there is no clear national Muslim organization charged with the management of the religious (as opposed to societal) life of Islam in Belgium. This could be a great opportunity to vet individual mosques and imams for subversive and/or violent preaching. Not surprisingly, the painfully tolerant unbelievers have once again sacrificed at the altar of tolerance and diversity.

The VB website’s information does not conflict with the substance of the observations of the “mainstream” Gazet van Antwerpen. VB adds their own action in regard to countering this decision; GvA adds some detail with the quote from the 2002 investigation report. I would call this one sufficiently documented to accept as true — although there is nothing that really pops up in the MSM.

It appears the usual suspects are only too happy to give this story the appearance of a minor local dispute by treating it with benign neglect.

Another Flemish reader sends his own report:

Filip Dewinter wrote about that mosque on his blog.

It makes me think of the huge Westermoskee project in Amsterdam. The city government and mayor Cohen subsidized it with 2 million euros through a very weird land deal. But the construction has stopped since the row between the board of that mosque and Milli Gorus, a militant Turkish group that took over the mosque.

Antifascistische ActieThe city council, however, has already removed a war memorial, probably because it had a white cross.

Some “right-wing” youngsters wanted to protest and were attacked by the militant Marxists of AFA [Antifascistische Actie, “Antifascist Action”].

Flanders is not an isolated case: the same situation is replicated across Europe in any country with a substantial population of Muslim immigrants.

Hat tip: White Elefant.

10 thoughts on “The Official Recognition of Flemish Mosques

  1. Anyone who fails to support Filip Dewinter and the Vlaams Belang in this regard – no matter what asinine excuse he or she may proffer – is a JIHADIST and a traitor to the entire civilized world. And that’s that!

  2. A Muslim on the Development Board of Boston(?) or New York(?) got a million dollar plus piece of land owned by the city for 1/4 the price. He flew to the Middle East gathering donations for the building of a mosque. An astute American filed a lawsuit. I’m not sure but the deal is off or still in litigation.

    An example of being ever vigilant. Still waiting for lawsuits on the footbaths.


  3. livefreerdie: A Muslim on the Development Board of Boston(?) or New York(?) got a million dollar plus piece of land owned by the city for 1/4 the price.

    That would be the Islamic Culture Center being built by the Islamic Society of Boston. Let’s hit some of the high notes, shall we?

    The very founder of the Islamic society, Abdurahman Alamoudi, is sitting in federal prison after pleading guilty to charges related to a bizarre plot by Moammar Ghadafi to assassinate Crown Prince Abdullah of Saudi Arabia. But the society insists it hasn’t had a relationship with its founder for several years.

    Dr. Yusef [“beat your wife lightly”] al-Qaradawi used to be listed as one of the society’s four directors, on IRS forms. The ISB says Qaradawi is a respected Muslim scholar, but the Egyptian Wahabbi cleric has urged Iraqi Muslims to kill American soldiers, and has praised Palestinian suicide bombers.

    Qaradawi is as near a Pope as Islam will ever have. He is almost singlehandedly responsible for the fatwa that sanctified murder bombers. I’ll ask that everyone note how Pakistan is suddenly in an uproar over bomb vest attacks now that it is Muslims who are being indiscriminately slaughtered. Strangely, no one has bothered to issue a death fatwa against Qaradawi for his role in sanctioning this hideous practice. Curious, that.

    In 1995, Qaradawi told his followers, “We will conquer Europe, we will conquer America!” The society says listing Qaradawi as a director was an “administrative oversight” which, it says, “was subsequently corrected.”

    Hale [head of Citizens for Peace and Tolerance] remarked, “This is a mosque that combines Wahabbi theology, Muslim Brotherhood politics and lots of money, and that’s a very dangerous combination. Everywhere in the world where that’s been found, bad things happened.”

    Osama Kandil, a trustee of the society, has been linked by the government to the directorship of Taibah International Aid Association, a group that some federal officials suspect supports terrorists. The ISB says Taibah is an Islamic charitable organization.

    Kandil has also been identified in a federal government affidavit as a member of the “Safa Group,” a complicated array of individuals and interlocking for-profit and non-profit entities allegedly involved in financing Islamic terrorism.

    Walid Fitaihi, another leader of the society, wrote in an article for an Arabic-language newspaper that Jews are the “the murderers of prophets.” According to one translation, he also accused Jews of the “oppression, murder, and rape of the worshipers of Allah. They have perpetrated the worst of evils, and they have brought the worst corruption to the earth…”

    Real Estate developer Steve Cohen, a member of Citizens for Peace and Tolerance, said, “The City of Boston sold land to the Mosque for $175,000. This land was worth some place between $450,000 and $1 million. This is a religious group that can raise $22 million from contributors in the Middle East. Why do they need financial assistance?”

    The ISB website has also put a statement of faith on its Web page that condemns bigotry, racism and anti-Semitism. It also affirms the equality of men and women, although we found instructions on the website on the correct way a man should beat his wife.

    Just your typical Saudi-financed Wahabbist outpost spewing Islamist hatred on American soil.

  4. livefreerdie: Still waiting for lawsuits on the footbaths.

    Oh, those are footbaths? I’ve been using them for something else entirely.

  5. I just picked up S. Solomon’s booklet “The Mosque Exposed”. This is terrifying reading.

    As far as I remember (I will doublecheck) he gives a blanket permission to translate and republish this in our respective countries. It might need a little editing for Britain-specific details, but that should be easy.

    We need our politicians to know what these mosques are really about.

  6. So a group of us could move to Belgium, call ourselves an Amadhi sect of Muslims (the “heretical” one, so-designated in Pakistan, et al) and get complete “religious” certification, total “parish” funding, a gratis “mosque” building, and “ministerial” living allowences, “sabbatical” expense account stipends, “faith-related” vacation cash, and dhimmi-funded retirement pensions?

    All these benefits for free from the naive EU idealists?


    This could be a way to get paid to oppose Islam –with a counter-“Muslim” sect– through anti-Sharia, peacefully-contrarian state-certified “mosques”.

    It would have the jihadi imams whirling like dervishes in rage.

    Somebody mooching off their Euro-cash cow.


  7. Just what is it that Boston’s sociopolitical elite does not understand about “giving aid and comfort” to our avowed enemies?

    Why are we not enforcing the laws against treason, even to the extent of putting a stop to overt actions that are obviously treasonable?

  8. 1389: Just what is it that Boston’s sociopolitical elite does not understand about “giving aid and comfort” to our avowed enemies?

    Two words: Ted Kennedy

  9. Henrik, here is a link to a brief yet interesting article that credits parts to Solomon’s, “The Mosque Exposed”. An revealing excerpt:

    Since worship is not merely religious ritual, Mohammed acted in his role as the supreme leader of the community and the mosque was his base of operation. Here are some examples of how Mohammed used the mosque to implement his all-encompassing Shariah law:

    · He made legislative decrees from the mosque. It is the seat of legislative government.

    · He taught his followers his ideology in the mosque. It is the educational seminary.

    · He sent and received official delegations at the mosque. It is the local embassy.

    · He conducted the affairs of the Islamic state, entertained heads of state, and appointed judges there. It is the seat of executive power.

    · He issued legal decrees and developed Sharia law there. It is the supreme court.

    · He issued social decrees. It is the social center of the community.

    · He proclaimed the superiority of Muslims over non-Muslims, issued death sentences against those who opposed him, and dispatched the executioners to carry out their duties. It is the place and symbol of Islamic rule.

    · He proclaimed the superiority of men over women at the mosque. It is place of inequality.

    · It is where he issued marching orders, proclaimed jihad, and recognized his warriors. It is a military base.


    Suffice to say that the foregoing makes me even less comfortable with the sheer existence of mosques on American soil. From reading the above, they are most definitely not churches of any sort and are, instead, statehouses for political Islam. Given the seditious nature of Islam with respect to Constitutional law, most mosques—especially any Wahabbist ones—might as well be KGB outposts.

  10. When I visited Belgium, the evangelical churches bragged of the fact that they paid for their own buildings and paid the salary of their workers.

    They knew that letting the state get its claws on the purse strings eventually caused the ruin of churches.

    So maybe the same for the mosques?

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