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Turkish Government Financing Expansion of Mosques in Denmark

Several new mosques subsidised by the Turkish state are being built in Denmark, while many of the existing ones are expanding their operations.

The conservative Danish newspaper Kristeligt Dagblad reports that new mosques financed by Erdoğan’s government are currently being built in Roskilde and Holbæk. The one in Roskilde, a city mostly famous for its annual music festival, is going to have two minarets and will open its doors in the next few months. In Federica and Aarhus, Turkey-funded mosques have opened within the last year. In Ringsted and Hedehusene, new places of worship were built as recently as 2013, and in Køge, a culture centre was added to the existing mosque during 2016.

All in all, 8 of the 27 Turkish mosques on Danish soil are in the process of expanding their facilities, or have applied to do so.

All the mosques are overseen by the Danish-Turkish Islamic Foundation, which in turn is managed by the Turkish embassy in Copenhagen as well as by the Diyanet, the Turkish Directorate of Religious Affairs. The Diyanet has 29 Denmark-based Turkish imams on its payroll, and also finances the construction of the mosques.

The “French” professor Samim Akgönül claims that this is all part of a broader Turkish religious expansion in Europe, and that the “physical” expansion (the building of new mosques) is aimed at furthering the Diyanet’s religious, political and cultural interests. In May this year, Akgönül published a report analysing the written-down sermons that the Diyanet distributes to Islamic places of worship all around Europe each week, and which the Turkish imams working in Denmark use for their preaching. He found that the sermons had strong political elements, often expressing support of president Erdoğan.

The Danish-Turkish journalist Deniz Serinci notes that thousands of mosques have been built in Turkey since the beginning of Erdoğan’s reign, and claims that the government is eager to see the same expansion happening abroad.

None of this should come as a surprise, seeing that Erdoğan has previously called for a Turkish demographic takeover of Europe, asking Turkish families living in European countries to have five children. It is also a well-known fact that Qatar is funding the construction of mosques all over Europe, while Saudi Arabia is keen to see its vile Wahhabism spread in the Occident, audaciously offering to finance the construction of 200 mosques in Germany during the 2015 “refugee” crisis.

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