As part of a two-year pilot project, the city of Cologne (Germany) authorized on October 6 the Muslim call to prayer in the streets.
Every Friday, the muezzin can thus be heard between 12 p.m. and 3 p.m., provided that the call to prayer does not last more than 5 minutes. Each of the 35 mosques in the city will have to designate a person responsible for collecting potential complaints from the neighborhood.
Viel Diskussion wg des Modellprojekts #Muezzin-Ruf. Köln ist die Stadt der (religiösen) Freiheit & Vielfalt. Wer am Hbf ankommt, wird vom Dom begrüßt und von Kirchengeläut begleitet. Viele KölnerInnen sind Muslime. Den Muezzin-Ruf zu erlauben ist für mich ein Zeichen des Respekts
– Henriette Reker (@HenrietteReker) October 9, 2021
“Cologne is the city of (religious) freedom and diversity. Those arriving at the main station are greeted by the cathedral and accompanied by the church bells, ”Mayor Henriette Reker wrote on Twitter.
“Stage victory for political Islam”
However, the decision is far from unanimous. If the Union of Turkish Islamic Affairs (Ditib) welcomes “the expression of the implantation of Muslims who have lived for generations in Germany”, politicians like the social democrat Lale Akgün (SPD) speak of a “victory stage for political Islam in Germany ”.
Cologne has nearly 120,000 inhabitants, or 12% of its population. In Germany, other cities like Düren or Munster have already taken the plunge.
In France, the call to prayer is not practiced even if the law does not prohibit it in theory. “Our legislation does not prohibit it, but it would take a municipal decree on the model of the ringing of bells for religious purposes as provided for in article 27 of the law of 1905”, explained to the newspaper The cross Didier Leschi, director of the French Office for Immigration and Integration.