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Imams in Germany fear hate attacks against Muslims

Thursday December 09, 2010 08:34:26 AM, DPA

Bonn (Germany): Imams have told a top German official that Muslims in Germany fear they may suffer hate attacks.

Interior Minister Thomas de Maiziere responded with a condemnation, telling the panel of Islamic clergy in Bonn: "Arson attacks and graffiti on mosques can have no place in our society."

One of the imams had just told him that attitudes to Islam were "generally more negative in Germany than in adjacent countries" and added that Muslims were worried there would attacks on mosques.

The minister, who oversees Germany's official negotiations with the Islamic community, about 5 per cent of the population, described his first meeting with a group of imams as a chance to "swap notes".

Officials estimate there are 2,000 imams in Germany, most of whom grew up in and were trained in Turkey.

The meeting with religion teachers from various Islamic denominations was organized in conjunction with the Germany-Islam Conference, a series of meetings organized by de Maiziere's ministry.





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