Swiss legislators vote to crack down on mosques with foreign funding

by WorldTribune Staff, October 2, 2017

Switzerland’s lower house of parliament has moved to ban the foreign funding of mosques in the country.

The law would also force mosques to preach in one of Switzerland’s official languages, German, French, Italian, or Romansch.  / Getty Images

The Swiss National Council on Sept. 26 voted 94-89 to ban the financing of mosques from abroad. It also voted to force mosques to use local languages instead of Arabic or other foreign tongues.

If the law passes the Senate, individual mosques will need to declare by whom they are backed as well as preach in one of Switzerland’s official languages – German, French, Italian, or Romansch, according to a report by Neue Zuercher Zeitung.

The Swiss federal government does not support the legislation, claiming it unfairly discriminates against Muslims by placing them under suspicion. The government also opposes making mosques use local languages.

Last year, the Swiss federal government blocked a law passed by the Council which proposed the banning of the full-face Islamic face veil.

Swiss parliament is said to have been inspired by Austria, which passed a similar law in 2015 that was designed to encourage a distinctly “European Islam” and to deter foreign influence on the nation’s Muslims.

Saudi Arabia has long spread its Wahhabist interpretation of Islam in Europe. The Saudis financed the construction of the Finsbury Park Mosque in London, which was notorious for its links to 9/11 conspirator Zacarias Moussaoui and shoe-bomber Richard Reid before it was reformed and re-opened in 2005.

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