German Court Orders Silencing of Mosque Loudspeakers
JNS.org – A German court has ruled to silence loudspeaker calls to prayer from a local mosque that was disturbing non-Muslim residents.
Authorities in the town of Oer-Erkenschwick in the western state of North Rhine-Westphalia had initially granted the local mosque the right to use the loudspeakers for Friday prayers in 2014.
However, Hans-Joachim Lehmann and his wife, who live just over half a mile away, won an injunction by arguing that the call to prayer violated their own religious rights.
The Lehman’s argued that “the Adhan contains phrases like, ‘Allah is great. I testify that there is no deity but Allah.’ This is an exclusively Islamic claim at the expense of other religions.”
“This represents Allah over our God of Christians,” said Lehman. “And I cannot accept that as a Christian who grew up here in a Christian environment.”
This is the first such ruling in Germany, which is home to millions of Muslims.
In Israel, proposed legislation limiting the use of similar loudspeakers passed its initial Knesset reading in March.
The Israeli legislation would limit the time of day and volume that Israeli mosques can use for their traditional calls to prayer, addressing a longstanding complaint of noise pollution by non-Muslims in proximity to mosques.