Far-right mayor bans Muslim prayers in Italian town

Mayor Anna Maria Cisint has banned Muslim prayers in the Adriatic port town of Monfalcone in Italy.

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Soon after, the far-right extremist mayor banned Muslim prayers, a Muslim cultural center in the small Italian town received an envelope containing two partially burned pages of the Quran.

The cultural center’s president, Bou Konate, told The Guardian, “It was hurtful, a serious insult we never expected. However, it was not a coincidence. The letter was a threat, generated by a campaign of hate that has stoked toxicity.”

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For over 20 years, the Muslim community has been relatively living a peaceful life, but the development came as a disappointment to the community.

Konate lamented that the Muslim community “had been praying peacefully here for over 20 years. But this was not only a place for prayer. People came to meet and chat. Children came for after-school lessons. There are many Islamic cultural centers across Europe where you can pray, and nobody prevents it.”

Meanwhile, Cisint, who has been nurturing anti-Islamic rhetoric in the town, is backed by Matteo Salvini’s League party and by Brothers of Italy, the party led by the Italian prime minister Georgia Meloni.

She won an easy reelection in 2022 because of her anti-immigration stance, which facilitated the rise to power of Italy’s far right. Moreover, one of her first policies was to remove the benches in the main square, which were reportedly used by immigrants.

Cisint even tried to limit the number of foreign students in schools and also scrapped cricket from the sports festival, given its importance in Muslim communities. She also restricted Muslim women from wearing burkinis at the beaches last year.

Furthermore, Cisint accuses Muslims of not wanting to learn Italian, and when they do, their primary objective is to obtain citizenship.


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