German politician calls for bar on foreign mosque financing

AP News
Posted: Apr 13, 2016 8:34 AM

BERLIN (AP) — A senior figure in one of Germany's governing parties called Wednesday for a law that would prevent foreign financing of mosques in the country.

Andreas Scheuer, the Christian Social Union's general secretary, argued in an interview with the daily Die Welt that "political Islam" undermines efforts to integrate people in Germany.

He said the country should draw up an "Islam law," arguing that financing of mosques or Islamic kindergartens from foreign countries such as Turkey and Saudi Arabia must be stopped, and that "all imams must be trained in Germany and share our fundamental values."

"It can't be the case that other, sometimes extreme, moral concepts, are imported from abroad," Scheuer was quoted as saying.

"German must become the language of the mosques," he added, arguing that "Europe must cultivate its own Islam."

Neighboring Austria early last year banned foreign funding for mosques and imams. While several politicians have called for such a ban in France, foreign financing of mosques is permitted there.

Scheuer's CSU is the Bavaria-only sister party to Chancellor Angela Merkel's conservative Christian Democratic Union and has criticized Merkel for not doing more to curb the migrant influx.