German minister says Germans should learn from Islam
German Finance Minister Wolfgang Schäuble, believes Islam was not responsible for the Manchester attack, but a "misunderstanding" and said Germans could "learn" from Islam he described as one of the world's "great religions".
Published: May 27, 2017, 12:22 pm
The minister said Islam presented an “opportunity” for “Christians, and all who live in Germany”, because “we can learn from them”. Schäuble was a guest on German public radio, Deutschlandfunk on Wednesday evening, to give his thoughts on the Islamist attack in which 22 mostly young people, including an eight-year-old girl, was killed by an Islamic suicide bomber.
“Many human values are very strongly realised in Islam. Think of hospitality, and other things like, what is there… And also tolerance, I believe, for example.” Schäuble, the Christian Democratic Union (CDU) minister, blamed “fanaticism” and not religion for terror.
“It is fanaticism, not only in Islam, that leads to terrible crimes,” he said, and added “it is certainly a misunderstanding of religion when belief slips into fanaticism or, at worst, violence.
“The world’s great religions all preach the message that one must look upon others as their sisters and brothers, and that one must live with the other because man cannot live alone,” Schäuble said.
“‘Islam is part of Germany’ is a sober, factual statement,” the minister told presenter Christiane Florin. “Anyone who denies this denies reality and is therefore not suited to being a politician, because politics begins with the confrontation of reality,” he added.
“I believe, for example, that Jews have suffered less in Islamic countries than in Christian countries,” Schäuble said.
AFP Deputy Alexander Gauland has strongly attacked Schäuble after his statements on Islam and on immigration. “Wolfgang Schäuble seems to have lost any relation to the social reality,” he said in a press release of his party.
Gauland called the statements cynical in the face of the attacks of Manchester and the Breitscheidplatz in Berlin. In both cases, Islamist perpetrators killed several people.
“Islam is not part of Germany. Muslim illegal immigration represents a great risk to our society.” This included an increased risk of terrorism as well as the costs for integration, Gauland said. He continued: “We want to continue to live with our freedoms in Germany: to enjoy pork stew and wine, and not to suppress our women by headscarves or burkas, as Sharia demands.”
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