2 – 4 January 2019
Cologne Central Mosque
The 2nd meeting of European Muslims in the German city of Cologne came to a close after a three-day-long gathering. Announcing the final declaration, Ali Erbas, the head of Turkey’s Religious Affairs Directorate, said terrorist groups exploit Islamic concepts and humanitarian values.
The head of Turkey’s Religious Affairs Directorate, said on Wednesday: “Islam is a religion of peace that defends and tries to keep the same universal values alive all over the world”, Erbas said at the opening ceremony of 2nd meeting of European Muslims in the German city of Cologne. “It is impossible to find any kind of reference in the religion of Islam that will deteriorate the environment of peace and tranquility ,” Erbas said.
Erbas said racism, xenophobia and attacks on mosques gradually narrow areas of freedom and restrict rights. “The recent increase in racial movements and anti-Islamic discourses and actions in Europe threaten the multiculturalism of Europe, the culture of living together, peace and tranquility,” he added. It is not acceptable to have an anti-Islamic attitude towards women and children, putting psychological pressure on people and limiting their daily lives, the declaration stressed. It also emphasized that attacks on mosques, educational buildings and work places increase every day.
“This approach, which diminishes the hopes of people towards a better future, poses a threat to Europe’s multi-culturalism, the law of living together as a community and peace. This kind of attitude must be rejected, whatever the aim is,” the statement said. The final declaration, which Erbas read, said written, visual and digital literature and publishings should be made in a way to establish the correct models of religious education in Europe.
It was also decided the European Muslims meetings should be held every two years, and that a secretariat will be established under the auspices of Turkey’s Religious Affairs Directorate.
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