The Phaserl


Lawmakers Ringing Alarm Over Possible Saudi Influence on European Muslims

from Sputnik News:

Swiss lawmakers have expressed growing concerns regarding lack of transparency over the country’s mosques and Muslim organizations’ funding. The parliamentarians fear foreign influence, citing the problem of Islamic radicalization in Europe.

Swiss parliamentarians have raised the alarm over possible foreign influence on the country’s mosques and called attention to lack of transparency over their funding.

Speaking to, Doris Fiala, member of the National Council and Vice-Chairperson of the Swiss delegation to the PACE, pointed out that it would be “naïve to say there is no problem with the financing of Swiss mosques.”

“We have no clue who is financing what. We don’t know what money is coming in. There is no transparency,” she underscored.

For her part, Saida Keller-Messahli, the president of the Forum for a Progressive Islam, told the Neue Zürcher Zeitung that “huge sums of money” flow to Switzerland from Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates, Qatar, Kuwait and Turkey.

Keller-Messahli claimed that one of those sponsors, the Saudi-based Muslim World League is spreading Wahhabi or Salafist views among European Muslims.

According to, the concerns were prompted by incidents in Winterthur and Geneva mosques.

The media outlet noted that in early November the umbrella association of Islamic organizations in Zurich (VIOZ) suspended the An’Nur mosque in Winterthur, after its imam was reportedly inciting violence.

Following the Paris attack in November 2015 the Tribune de Geneve wrote that French police searched the homes of two French imams who worked at the Geneva mosque. The mosque is managed by the Islamic Cultural Foundation of Geneva, reportedly sponsored by Saudi donors.

In his March interview with Sputnik French journalist and founder of Agora Erasmus political organization Karel Vereycken underscored that Europeans fear that Saudi preachers are spreading Wahhabi teaching and inciting violence in EU mosques.

“Increasingly, voices have been raised against Saudi Arabia and the spreading of Wahhabi fundamentalism through the Saudi-run Great mosque of Brussels and the Centre Islamique de Belgique (CIB) of Molenbeek, where many young criminals were recruited for making the trip to Syria,” Vereycken told Sputnik.

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