المساعد الشخصي الرقمي

مشاهدة النسخة كاملة : The distribution of Muslim minorities in Europe 2


aammar
03-02-2013, 08:20 AM
Large Muslim communities in Western Europe are concentrated in France, Germany, and Britain. The origins of the Islamic presence in France dates back to the days of Al-Andalus, and after the defeat of Muslims in the Battle of Tours, as previously mentioned. Some Muslim prisoners of war were captured by the French forces and transferred to the north of France where they settled. This marks the first actual presence of Muslims in France. After the fall of Andalusia, the Franks [Frankish Empire] hunted the Muslims down, killed and massacred them mercilessly. About 150 thousand Muslims were forced to flee to the south of France where they settled.

The last immigration wave to France took place in the modern era in the wake of World War II. Most of these migrations came from the Maghreb, for economic reasons such as looking for work opportunities, or on political grounds such as fleeing from the persecution of dictatorships.

At the present time, Islam has become the second religion in France. More than 6 million Muslims live in France, out of a population of 63.7 million in 2007. The Muslim minority represents 9.4% of the population of France, knowing that unofficial statistics indicate that the number of Muslims is much more than this; because the official statistics only take into account Muslim people, who were Muslims when they migrated to France. French Muslims are not included in the census because France is a secular state that does not include religion in identification papers.

Speculation and studies suggest that the number of Muslims will increase three times by the year 2020 AD to reach 20 million because of the high fertility and birth rates among Muslims, and the continued influx of Muslim immigrants to France. Add to that, the large number of French people who embrace Islam. More than 100 thousand Muslims in France are of French origin. There are now 1300 mosques in France and about 600 Islamic associations and societies.

The statistics also indicate that 40% of the Moroccan communities annually obtain French citizenship. This incurs panic and tension in the French government which were best translated in the persecution to which the Muslim community and its famous figures have been recently subjected. This persecution drove the Muslim community in France to complain and protest, as we have read in the media.

In Germany, there is a noticeable increase in the number of converts to Islam. During the period from June 2004 to June 2005, 4000 Germans converted to Islam, with an increase of four times more than the number of converts during the same period in the previous year. The total number of Muslims in Germany reached 3.5 million, representing 4.2% of Germany's population of 82 million in 2007. The presence of the Muslim population in Germany dates back to the sixteenth century AD. The first mosque in Germany was built in Potsdam in 1731.

The oldest mosque, which is intact until now, is located in the capital Berlin. It was built in 1924 and was followed by another mosque in the city of Hamburg that was established in 1957. Since 1995, Al-Fat-h Mosque in Mannheim is considered one of the largest mosques in Germany. The number of mosques and prayer areas in Germany has reached 2200.
One of the active Islamic organizations in the German society is (the Islamic Alliance) that was founded in 1958 by a group of foreign students with the help of a number of Muslims living in Germany.

The organization issues a magazine entitled (Islam), and has a web page on the Internet. The Organization contributed in the establishment of a large number of Islamic centers in numerous German cities. The most important of these Islamic centers are located in Munich, Stuttgart and Cologne. About 60 associations are affiliated to this Islamic organization. The number of its members reached about 60 thousand.

There are many other Islamic organizations in Germany, such as the Turkish-Islamic Union which was founded in 1985, the Turkish Milli Jhorosh Foundation which was founded in 1986, and the Supreme Council of Muslims in Germany which was founded in 1994.

In Britain, the Muslim population exceeded 1.6 million, representing 2.7% of the population that reached 61 million in 2007.
In Italy, the latest official statistics indicated that the number of Italian Muslims reached more than a million out of a population of 58 millions in 2007. The estimated number of Muslims in Spain, according to the Spanish Federation of Muslim communities, reached about 700 thousands, including more than 200 thousand Spanish citizens. The population of Spain reached 40.4 million people in 2007. The estimated number of mosques in various Spanish cities was around six hundred.

There are also Muslim communities in the other European countries, such as The Netherlands, accounting for 5.5% of the total population of 16.5 million in 2007. There are Muslim communities in Switzerland, which is located south of Central Europe with a population of about seven million people. Islam was first introduced into Switzerland by Muslim Andalusian sailors in 321 AH/ 939 AD. After the fall of Al-Andalus, a number of Muslims migrated, fleeing from religious persecution to the south of Switzerland.

In modern times after World War II, a Muslim minority resorted to Switzerland. As a result of the efforts of some Islamic callers to Allaah, a number of Swiss converted to Islam. The number of Muslims in Switzerland in the year 1371 AH/ 1951 AD was two thousands, whereas the current number of Muslims in Switzerland is 400 thousand. There are also Muslim communities in Italy, Belgium, Greece, Cyprus, Spain, Malta, Austria and other European countries.
The estimated number of Muslims in the whole of Europe is about 50 million.