Germany: Controversy surrounds the Cologne mosque

Source: FSSPX News


The mosque planned for the Ehrenfeld quarter of Cologne will have minarets as high as 55 meters and a cupola measuring 35 meters. Paul Böhm, the building’s architect drew up the plans in conjunction with the Turkish Islamic Union of Theological Affairs (DITIB) as the main contractors. “From an architectural and urbanistic point of view, we consider the solution we have arrived at, to be the right one,” said Paul Böhm on August 22.

A survey carried out by the paper Kölner Stadt-Anzeigers in June, revealed that 36% of the inhabitants of Cologne had no objection to these plans, a third were against the construction, and 27% would be in favor if the proportions of the building were to be scaled down. The CDU (Union of Christian Democrats) of Cologne had demanded a significant reduction in the dimensions of both the minarets and the dome.

 The mosque will have a capacity for 2000 people. One of the essential modifications in the previous plans, allowed the place destined for prayer to appear “visible and free,” pointed out the architect. “Henceforth, the mosque will be revealed in all its grandeur, and has become more transparent.” The roof of the cupola will be made of glass and decorated with six skylights. The minarets will also have several skylights, representing “praying hands”.

 Necla Kelek, a German sociologist of Turkish origin had this to say in the Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung on June 5: “For Muslims, mosques are not merely sacred places like churches or synagogues, but ‘multi-functional buildings’. Islam should not be considered solely as a spiritual vision of the world. Daily life, politics and faith form an inseparable whole. There is no obligatory theological doctrine. So, many Muslim associations in Germany play the role of a religious party and represent political concerns. This is why the building of this mosque is not a question of freedom of worship, but a political matter.” (Sources: Apic / Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung)