Belgian MP Georges Dallemagne has expressed concern that the Grand Mosque of Brussels may have resumed more hardline sermons and may be continuing to preach hate.
Mr Dallemagne said earlier this week that he believed the leaders of the Grand Mosque were deceiving the authorities and “stringing them along” when it came to preaching more radical forms of Islam, Sudinfo reports.
The Islamic and Cultural Center of Belgium (CICB) which operates out of the Grand Mosque, has been accused of spreading Wahabbist ideology in the past by a report from the Belgian Unit for Coordination and Threat Analysis (OCAM), the contents of which was leaked earlier this year.
“The teaching of the Muslim religion of the Arab section of the Islamic and Cultural Center of Belgium is in no way adapted to the Belgian or European reference framework. Salafist ideas and doctrines that encourage the rejection of any different ideas and fundamental constitutional rights and freedoms,” the report said.
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“The Muslim World League is still the main sponsor of the Great Mosque,” Dallemagne said. The Muslim World League (MWL) is a Saudi-based organisation that has been linked to anti-semitic speakers in the past and some have even accused it of indirectly funding former al-Qaeda leader Osama bin Laden.
In March of this year, Belgian authorities terminated the 99-year rent-free lease of the mosque given to Saudi Arabia in order to put an end to foreign influence over the mosque.
In a statement following the move, Justice Minister Koen Geens said, “From now on, the mosque will have to establish a lasting relationship with the Belgian authorities, while respecting the laws and the traditions of our country, which convey a tolerant vision of Islam.”
Belgium is often cited as one of the centres of radical Islam in Europe, particularly areas like the Brussels suburb of Molenbeek where Bataclan terrorist Salah Abdeslam managed to hide for months before being arrested following a raid on his residence in 2016.
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