Muslim organizations and mosques in Germany will hold a nationwide campaign on Sept. 19 against religious extremism and draw attention to growing racism and attacks against mosques.
“We call on everyone to behave peacefully, to raise their voice against racism, to stand together for our free, democratic order and to say no to every kind of extremism,” said Muslim Coordination Council (KRM) spokesman Ali Kizilkazya.
Imams from more than 2000 mosques are scheduled to deliver messages on the real values of Islam in their sermon this week.
There will also be peace rallies and vigils in front of mosques in nine big cities, including Berlin, Frankfurt, Hamburg, Munich and Hannover.
People of all races and religions are invited to attend the nationwide campaign "Muslims Standing Against Hate and Injustice."
"We would like to give a clear message on Friday. We will try to demonstrate what Islam in reality stands for," said Dr. Zekeriya Altug, head of the largest Turkish-Muslim union in Germany.
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"We want to make clear that terrorists do not speak in the name of Islam," the chairperson of the Central Muslim Council, Aiman Mazyek also stressed.
For some time now, Islam and Muslims have become almost synonymous with intolerance and violence. With self-righteous religious extremists, blowing up buildings, killing people in the name of God and taking over entire cities, it is not hard to overlook the fact that these miscreants are but a fraction of a largely tolerant and peaceful population.
The extremists, committing all sorts of atrocities are all over the news and hence have automatically assumed the representation of a religion they make a mockery of.
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Misconceptions about Muslims in general, thanks to their actions of a mad few, create problems and dangers for Muslims the world over. They are feared, suspected, marginalized and even victims of hate crime.
The idea, therefore, for the silent and lesser known minority to speak up and show what their religion is all about has been a long time coming.
More peace-loving Muslims need to let their presence be known and stand up against the atrocities committed by a handful of evildoers in the name of religion.