Merkel party calls for state to spy on mosques

Authorities should be keeping an eye on the content of sermons in Germany's mosques, a senior member of Chancellor Angela Merkel's party has said.

Merkel party calls for state to spy on mosques
Photo: DPA

“We need to talk about that fact that in some mosques sermons are given that don’t chime with our understanding of the role of the state,” said Volker Kauder, leader of the Christian Democratic Union (CDU) in the Bundestag (German parliament), in an interview with the Berliner Zeitung.

“It is the duty of the state to keep checks on that.”

Germany is a secular country “in which religion doesn’t take precedence over the state, but vice versa.”

“Everyone has to abide by this, and all representatives and adherents to a religion need to accept this,” Kauder concluded.

Conservative politicians of various stripes have been proposing laws over recent weeks to tackle a perceived problem with integration of Germany’s Muslim population.

Andreas Scheuer, Secretary General of the Christian Social Union (CSU), the Bavarian sister party to the CDU, called recently for German to become the obligatory language of mosque sermons.

Scheuer argued that imams should be educated in Germany and “share our fundamental values”.

“It cannot be that other, partially extreme value systems are imported here,” Scheuer stated. “German must be the language of mosques.” 

Kauder, however, said he didn’t support this proposal, describing it as a “pseudo-debate”.

“For Italians the holy mass is also given in Italian. In synagogues they pray in Hebrew. That should be accepted,” he said.

Frauke Petry, leader of the Alternative for Germany, meanwhile called for a ban on minarets on Friday.

The head of the populist right-wing party, which has seen its popularity surge during the refugee crisis, told the Rheinische Post that “whoever wants to live a private Muslim life doesn’t need minarets.”

The towers which are traditionally found at the corners of mosques “are an expression of an Islamic claim to power which is in contravention of the German constitution,” Petry claimed.

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