Denmark Imam triggers controversy over adulterers stoning call

Muslims praying

Leading politicians in Denmark, on Monday, reacted with anger over remarks by an Imam who argued that adulterers should be stoned, citing sharia law.

The Imam, Abu Ismail, said that a virgin who committed adultery should be whipped.

He added that those who abandoned their religion should be executed, according to clips released by Danish broadcaster TV2.

The remarks were made at a lecture on religious laws to a group of women at a mosque in the western city of Aarhus, which was secretly recorded by TV2 for an upcoming documentary.

Aarhus police said it was investigating if charges could be brought over the remarks.

“It’s awful that there are people in Denmark who preach such things, it doesn’t belong here,” said Inger Stojberg, Minister for Immigration and Integration.

Stojberg said she would like to close the Grimhoj mosque where Ismail is active, but said it may remain open in order to keep track of similar extremists.

The head of the Grimhoj mosque, Oussama El-Saadi, said that the mosque followed Danish laws, and the imam’s answers concerned what he knew about sharia and were in response to questions from TV2’s spy.

The remarks prompted angry comments from members of the right-wing populist Danish People’s Party, Conservatives and the Social Democrats.

Ismail has already been involved in several controversies, and was fined by a German court after he called for the killing of “Zionist Jews” during a 2014 visit to a Berlin mosque.

Trine Bramsen, legal affairs spokeswoman of the Social Democrats, said Stojberg and Justice Minister Soren Pind would be invited to the parliament’s Legal Affairs Committee to discuss measures to act against extremist views.
“We want answers from the government.

“The mosque can be shut, but if the imam moves to another mosque that really doesn’t help,’’ she said.

The mosque is part of a programme launched some years ago in Aarhus, aimed at dissuading youths from joining radical groups.

(dpa/NAN)


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