Christian party wants to ban Dutch mosques' calls to prayer
Christian party SGP wants to ban mosques in the Netherlands from making their daily calls to prayer with the words "Allahu Akbar", party leader Kees van der Staaij said to broadcaster NOS. This ban is one of the points in the SGP's election campaign, which will be released in two weeks.
"We're not in the Middle East here. We don't have to find it normal that at so many times, with that volume, 'Allah is great' blares through the street", the SGP leader said. "We have recently seen more and more irritation arise about these prayer calls."According to him, this measure would need no constitutional changes - the number of prayer calls can be limited through the public demonstrations law.
According to Van der Staaij, Muslims in the Netherlands have more freedom than in many Muslim states. "We do not have to let our freedoms talk."\
Asked about the SGP's plan, Minister Ronald Plasterk of Home Affairs pointed out that the same rules that apply for mosques' calls to prayer also apply to church bell. The right to call to prayer is part of the Constitution, in Article 6 on the freedom of religion.