TURKEY’S (DITIB) GROWING INFLUENCE OVER ISLAM IN AUSTRIA – by Soeren Kern • June 30, 2016
- The Berlin-based expert on Turkey, Ralph Ghadban, warns that the Islam being preached in Turkish-controlled mosques in Europe is a “Sharia Islam with strong Turkish-nationalist overtones” that calls for a “strict separation from Western individualistic values.”
- In February 2016, the University of Vienna published study which found that Islamic kindergartens in the capital are dominated by “intellectual Salafists and political Islamists” who are contributing to the “theologically-motivated isolation” of Muslim pupils. The report calls into question claims by the IGGiÖ that anti-Western textbooks have been removed from Austrian schools.
- Muslim students now outnumber Roman Catholic students at middle and secondary schools in Vienna, according to official statistics, which show that Muslim students are also on the verge of overtaking Catholics in Viennese elementary schools. The data confirms a massive demographic and religious shift in Austria, traditionally a Roman Catholic country.
The selection of 28-year-old Ibrahim Olgun as the new leader of the Islamic Religious Community in Austria has been criticized by other local Muslim leaders as “undemocratic” and “illegal.” They believe Olgun will work to increase Turkey’s influence over Muslims in Austria. At right, the Saudi-funded King Abdullah bin Abdulaziz International Centre for Interreligious and Intercultural Dialogue in Vienna, which critics say spreads fundamentalist Wahhabi Islam.
The selection of an ethnic Turk to lead the Islamic Religious Community in Austria (Islamischen Glaubensgemeinschaft in Österreich, IGGiÖ), the primary representative of Muslims in the country, is being challenged by Muslim groups opposed to Turkey’s growing influence over the practice of Islam in Austria.
Ibrahim Olgun, a 28-year-old Austrian-born Islamic theologian with ties to the Turkish state, was quietly named on June 19 to replace 62-yer-old Fuat Sanac, who stepped down after serving as IGGiÖ president for five years. Read more http://www.gatestoneinstitute.org/8352/austria-islam-turkey