Alma Zadic Consorts With Salafists in Graz

Last week Elisabeth Sabaditsch-Wolff wrote about Alma Zadic, the new Austrian Minister of Justice. Ms. Zadic is a Bosnian Muslima and a politician for the Green Party who describes herself as a dedicated feminist. However, her visit last fall to a Bosnian Salafist mosque in Graz has caused some recent controversy, because the ideology espoused at the mosque could hardly be said to be supportive of the rights of women as they are understood in Austria or anywhere else in the West.

The following video presentation was recorded by a man named Irfan Peci. Mr. Peci was born in Serbia, and in the early 1990s, when he was still very small, his family moved to Germany to escape the Balkan wars. As a young man he was recruited by the local Al Qaeda affiliate in Germany, and worked for their propaganda organization. He was eventually arrested and imprisoned by the German authorities. While he was still in prison he was de-radicalized, and when he left prison became an undercover agent within Al Qaeda for the German government. After he was exposed, he wrote a book about his experiences and started producing videos.

Mr. Peci understands Bosnian, and knows the Salafist scene in Bosnia, so he was able to expose the Salafist connections with the mosque that Ms. Zadic visited. The fact that she also understands Bosnian highlights the disingenuousness of any assertions that she didn’t know what was going on in the Ihlas Mosque and Islamic Cultural Center in Graz.

Many thanks to MissPiggy for the translation, and to Vlad Tepes for the subtitling:

Video transcript:

00:00   Does Mrs. Zadic have contacts with Islamists?
00:03   In asking this question, I want to focus on a mosque visit she made in September 2019.
00:14   She visited a mosque in Graz which is very problematic. I want to focus on two points that
00:23   I think are the most problematic. There are other points that can be criticised, of course, but
00:30   these two points are especially very problematic.
00:34   First of all, that Salafist preachers are allowed
00:39   to preach there. Salafist preachers from Bosnia are going in and out. The other point,
00:49   which is of course the biggest contradiction,
00:52   when you think about the fact that Mrs. Zadic calls
00:56   herself a super-feminist: Little girls, underage,
01:02   well under 14 years old, are required to be veiled
01:09   in this mosque. And not only their own Muslim girls are veiled, but also non-Muslim students are
01:19   veiled when they visit from the local elementary schools.
01:24   I just want to ask the question: How does this fit together with the feminist Zadic?
01:36   She calls herself a feminist. Does that match up when she visits a mosque where there were
01:42   “very proficient exchanges about intercultural competence integration”. How does that go
01:51   together with her feminist attitude if she visits a mosque where Salafi preachers can preach
02:00   openly? If you take a closer look at the preaching the Salafist preacher — and I’ll give you an
02:06   example — and then you see that these are of course
02:10   the absolute opposite of criticism of feminism,
02:13   even actively mentioning feminism and of course negatively in order to warn against feminism.
02:22   Have a look at women who are feminists. Feminism spreads different ideas that aren’t
02:30   in accordance with the Sharia or contradict the Sharia.
02:34   Either they follow the Sharia or they follow
02:40   the rules of feminism. What often happens is that
02:46   Muslim women give priority to the feminist ideas
02:52   over the Quran and even justify it. These kinds of woman are those who cover themselves, but
02:59   leave their ears and the neck exposed. They don’t even follow Islamic law. They fall under
03:03   the influence of the West and its culture and ideas. They simply overstep
03:08   the Islamic rules and do what they want.
03:17   They talk about slaves. I will also include an excerpt in which you can see a Salafist preacher,
03:25   Who was in this mosque several times and allowed to preach, speaking in his lectures about
03:32   female slaves and how they were divvied up at that time.
03:37   During the battle of Khandaq, when the Prophet besieged the Jews,
03:44   one of the woman taken prisoner (slave) was Safiya, the daughter of the leader of the tribe.
03:54   The prophet gave her to one of his comrades. (As spoils of war).
03:57   When Aisha (the youngest wife of the prophet) saw her (Safiya), she said:
04:03   “If the Prophet had seen her, he would have taken her as his wife!” She was very beautiful…
04:12   How can it be reconciled that she visits a mosque where one of the two Imams openly
04:18   writes that it is the task of the women has always been and will always be
04:24   to raise the children? (TRANSLATION: The most important function for a woman is childrearing)
04:32   How does she justify that with her attitude as a liberal Muslim?
04:36   Yes, of course; I don’t think she is an Islamist, but how does it fit in with visiting a mosque
04:42   as a liberal Muslim instead of any of the liberal Bosnian mosques?
04:46   Of all things she chooses one
04:50   where Salafist preachers are allowed to act very openly
04:55   and freely and in which little girls are veiled.
05:00   Why did she choose this mosque of all places to visit? And the problem is now of course also
05:07   that her visit makes the mosque more respectable. Even respectable enough to make them
05:14   official intermediaries. It was stated that they had exchanged views on the topic of integration
05:20   and intercultural competence. That means that this is a recognized mosque.
05:26   These are Muslim cooperation partners with whom we can talk and with whom we can
05:31   cooperate. Especially now, in her function as Minister of Justice, it is of course especially
05:37   problematic that she visits a mosque where Salafists
05:41   are allowed to preach, in which little girls
05:45   are veiled and with that, the fact that her visit gives credibility to such a mosque.
05:50   What is she doing there as the Minister of Justice? How could she take any action against
05:54   these people now? The same people she “exchanged views” with yesterday on the
05:58   topic of integration? Obviously she already has a conflict of interest.
06:03   Now of course one could say she didn’t know what was being preached in this mosque,
06:08   but the problem with that is she understands the language. Preaching isn’t done in German.
06:15   It’s not written in German. Some parts are written in German,
06:18   which isn’t a problem for the Austrians.
06:21   Certain passages that might not be liked are of course always written in Bosnian.
06:29   She knows Bosnian. She understands the language. So one can’t accept that she didn’t know
06:35   what is preached there. So either way, even if she didn’t know, it’s a big mistake not to make
06:44   a background check on people before you work with them and before you legitimize them
06:49   as official dialogue partners. Not only does she know the language, but as a Bosnian,
06:58   originating from Bosnia, she has a very good connection to Bosnia and knows it very well.
07:06   Yes, so, for an Austrian it is always difficult to distinguish who’s who due to lack of knowledge.
07:10   Which ones are Bosnians? Which one are the liberal Muslims? Who are the average Bosnians?
07:15   Which ones are the very strict in their belief? Who are the radicals? Of course for the average
07:19   Austrian this is very difficult to discern. There were even other politicians in this mosque too.
07:24   However, the fact that she originally comes from Bosnia, knows it much better than most,
07:29   and can actually assess far better who belongs to which branch (of Islam) and with whom
07:35   one should talk or shouldn’t talk. For that reason, the argument that she allegedly knew nothing
07:41   about all of this is unacceptable. —Here we see the post of her mosque visit in September 2019.
07:50   This is an official post from the mosque. We see Mrs. Zadic and another Green MP.
07:57   So you might be asking yourself why I think this mosque, this Islam Cultural Center
08:05   might have contact with Salafists. Do I have any proof?
08:10   So now I’m going to show you several examples. Here we see that the Islamic Cultural Center
08:16   works in cooperation with the Ihlas Mosque. Both are in the city of Graz. They host events
08:22   together and so on. The Ihlas mosque, as is clearly stated here, is a Salafist mosque.
08:30   They host the most well-known hate preacher Elvedin Pezic, and he’s invited on a regular basis.
08:42   Here we see Pajevic, who is the Imam of the Ihlas Salafist mosque. He is speaking here at
08:49   the Islamic Cultural Center. Here we see Pajevic in the Ihlas mosque on November 2018,
08:57   and next to him is the Bosnian hate preacher Elvedin Pezic. There is plenty of information
09:05   about him in German; documentaries were even made about him. Everything is documented
09:09   and his speeches are available online. He ranks as the most well-known Salafist preacher
09:17   in the Balkans at the moment. There are other preachers like this one here. He’s one of the top
09:24   Three Bosnian Salafist preachers, you could say. This is Dr. Safet Kuduzovic. This is a post from
09:32   the official Facebook page of the Ihlas Mosque. Speeches by Kuduzovic are posted here
09:40   regularly and propagated. Here is further proof that Elvedin Pezic is a regular guest
09:52   at the Ihlas Mosque. Here you see him. This post is from December of 2017, or this one
09:59   from February. This shows that they regularly invite the most famous Salafist preacher from
10:06   the Balkans, Elvedin Pezic. This information is available to the public and of course
10:15   the Islamic Cultural Center knows it. Here is further proof of their work with Salafists.
10:24   This post shows that Adnan Mrkonjic was invited. Another well-known Salafist preacher who
10:30   studied Islam for 17 years in Kuwait. The post is in Bosnian, but I translated it.
10:38   It says that he is a regular guest, not just one-time, but is invited on a regular basis.
10:44   Now I’m going to show you a children’s Quran competition, where Mrkonjic was invited
10:51   to be a jury member. Here we see Mrkonjic at the podium. He is permitted to openly preach
11:00   at the Islam Cultural Center in Graz. Here he is arriving for the children’s Quran competition.
11:04   Next to him on the left is the chairman of the mosque in Graz.
11:10   What does Mrkonjic stand for? I translated a short clip of him on a Bosnian TV show and
11:19   the moderator asks a few questions such as, are you a Wahhabist? Are you a Salafist?
11:25   Mrkonjic openly declares his religious devotion to Salafism.
11:29   An extreme understanding of Islam.
11:32   He relativizes that by saying all Muslims are actually Salafists or that many of them are.
11:38   That’s nonsense. The majority of Muslims reject this extreme understanding of Salafist Islam,
11:47   but in any case he is committed to a Salafist understanding of Islam.
11:53   So if you deny being a Wahhabist, then I have to ask it a different way. Are you a Salafist?
11:57   Salafist is a term that exists in the Islamic history. Salafism is a current within Islam
12:03   that all four of the schools of Islamic law profess. —But you also don’t distance yourself
12:08   from the term Salafist. —We and other Muslims are all followers of Salafism.
12:12   The Salaf are our ancestors and our ancestors are the four Imams
12:18   (recounting the 4 schools of Islamic law)
12:23   So here is the post about the Quran competition in May of 2019. That is so long ago.
12:31   That was when Mrkonjic was invited as a jury member and he rated the Quranic singing.
12:39   It also states here that the Salafist Ihlas Mosque also participated.
12:48   Here we see Mrkonjic with the jury and him giving out certificates.
12:54   Here’s further proof. Besides the Salafist Ihlas Mosque and Mrkonjic, there’s another
13:05   Salafist preacher who is well-known. His name is Almir Kapic. There’s even an article
13:12   about Kapic in The Standard. This is an excerpt from the article. From this you can
13:18   get an impression of what kind of Islam Kapic adheres to. He clearly can be included
13:24   in the Salafist branch of Islam. The article quotes him as saying, “The West wants to
13:31   force us to accept that marriage between same-sex partners is permitted.”
13:35   That’s interesting. What would Mrs. Zadic or the Green party say to that?
13:40   These are exactly the topics they advocate, but why are they visiting mosques where
13:45   such things are preached? Now we arrive at the next problem. Besides inviting Salafist
13:51   preachers as regular guests in the mosque, this here is of course also very problematic.
13:59   We see here young girls, clearly under 14 years old. I would guess they are
14:04   four or five years old to twelve years old, approximately. Here they are veiled, but how does
14:13   that fit together the headscarf ban which applies to schools now? There’s a headscarf ban
14:20   for girls up to the age of 14 years old and here girls clearly under 14 years of age are veiled.
14:27   How does that fit in with Zadic’s feminist attitude?
14:30   That’s what I ask myself. Here’s another photo.
14:33   I made them all unrecognizable because they are children and I don’t want to expose them.
14:40   These are all photos from a public forum. From the accounts of the mosque and from
14:46   the internet site. So if you want to see the original photos you can simply google the
14:51   internet site and then you will find all these photos. Here we have more photos of girls
15:00   also clearly under the age of 14 who are veiled. Not only the girls that belong to the mosque
15:09   are veiled, but even school classes are. So when school classes come to visit,
15:15   all the girls are covered. Even those under 14. This of course a very clear violation
15:23   to the headscarf ban. Girls at school are forbidden to wear a headscarf and then be sent
15:31   by the school to mosques where they have to wear one. Here’s an excerpt from an interview
15:36   conducted with Mrs. Zadic. Here she describes herself as a strong feminist
15:40   and she says that she was
15:43   raised that way. So the question is: how does she
15:47   reconcile all of this? If she is such a strongly
15:50   committed feminist but at the same time visits a mosque
15:54   where little girls, underage girls, are veiled
15:58   and where the preachers are invited as guests who preach against feminism,
16:04   and talking about female slaves etc. How does this go together?
16:11   All the things I’m mentioning, like Salafist preachers being allowed to preach in this mosque,
16:18   the underage girls, the disparaging remarks about women made by the Imam — all this is public.
16:28   None of it is done secretly or just my interpretation or secretly filmed or anything like that.
16:36   The Friday prayers weren’t secretly edited or anything like that. None of it is done covertly,
16:43   secretly done or somehow recorded. It is all public.
16:47   All this is public from the official account of
16:50   the mosque and from the official account of the Imam. The photos are all from the accounts
16:57   on the social networks of the mosque or from the internet site. Every bit of evidence that
17:04   I’m showing is public and easily accessible for everyone. So the argument that she (Mrs. Zadic)
17:15   didn’t know about it is invalid. The question has to be raised,
17:19   is there something more going on
17:22   than just an exchange of ideas? Were any plans for cooperation agreed upon?
17:26   Just the fact that she has contact with them is problematic, because now she is
17:30   the Minister of Justice. During the visit,
17:33   certainly business cards, phone numbers were exchanged,
17:37   and they are in contact with each other. Perhaps even on a very informal level.
17:41   So now people from such a mosque have a very good wire to the Ministry of Justice.
17:48   So now the question is: Did something more than an exchange of ideas take place? Did they
17:52   make some kind of agreements? What kind of relationship do they have with each other?
17:56   Could it be that such people from this kind of mosque have influence on the Minister of Justice?
18:06   Or anything else? These are all questions that are unanswered and exist due to her visit
18:15   to this mosque. It wasn’t years ago or something. It was a few months ago, in September 2019.
18:22   Yes, well, so much about that. I would be very interested to hear what Austrians
18:29   think about the fact that such a woman visits such a mosque. Once again, who knows what kind
18:38   of agreements were made. What do Austrians think about the fact that such a person is now
18:44   the Minister of Justice in this country. Yes, I would love to hear your opinion in the
18:49   comments section and otherwise, thank you very much for listening and see you next time.

6 thoughts on “Alma Zadic Consorts With Salafists in Graz

  1. How low can we go? For the Muslims it must be like taking candy from a drug addict. Money changers everywhere. JC. I can see what ye mean. oh well. Don’t be late start today – get out while ye can.

  2. I’d bet dollars to donuts the mosque under discussion is openly talking about female slavery that they are actively trafficking girls and women.

    Where there’s smoke, there’s fire.

    Did the Kurz government appoint this Zadic character? That would be hugely disappointing if true.

    • Why are you asking whether the Kurz government appointed Ms. Zadic? Who else but Kurz would appoint her?

      BTW, there is no definitive proof that Ms. Zadic is Muslim. Apparently she has both Muslim and non-Muslim family. She herself has thus far not said what she is, apart from being “non-religious.” She may or may not be officially Muslim, but her actions count.

      • I asked about the Kurz government because I’m not Austrian and not overly familiar with their system of government.

        I missed the part where I expressed interest in Zadic’s faith.

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