ISLAM NOT PART OF GERMANY, SAYS MERKEL ALLY
- A leading member of Chancellor Angela Merkel's conservatives said on Thursday that Islam did not belong to Germany, remarks sure to stir controversy as the government hosts a conference to improve the integration of Muslims, Reuters reported,
A row over whether an ultra-conservative Salafist Muslim group should be allowed to hand out millions of free German translations of the Koran to non-Muslims had already raised tensions and threatened to overshadow the conference.
"Islam is not part of our tradition and identity in Germany and so does not belong to Germany," Volker Kauder, head of Merkel's conservative bloc in parliament, told the Passauer Neue Presse.
"But Muslims belong to Germany. As state citizens, of course, they enjoy their full rights."
Germany is home to some 4 million Muslims, about half of whom have German citizenship. Many came from Turkey in the 1960s and 1970s and their hard work contributed to Germany's post-war economic miracle. Germany's total population is about 80 million.
In response to concerns about radicalization and aware of the potential boost a well-qualified cohort of young Muslims could give to Europe's biggest economy, Merkel set up forums six years ago to improve integration, a highly charged issue.
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AZERBAIJAN CONTINUES ACQUIRING WEAPONRY, BUT HOPES FOR PEACEFUL SETTLEMENT OF KARABAKH CONFLICT - ALIYEV
- 1895 The ambassadors from England, France and Russia present a program of reforms (for the six Armenian provinces of Western Armenia), to the Ottoman Turkish government.
- 1920 At the meeting of the Entente States in San Remo (Italy) it was suggested to give a mandate over Armenia through the good offices of President Woodrow Wilson.
- 1932 The Ministries of Heavy and Light Industries, and of Forestry are created in Armenia.
- 1944 Creation of the Administration of Architectural Affairs in the Armenian SSR.
- 1958 Death of singer Haiganoosh Danielian. She was born in 1893.
- 1990 The Cypriot Parliament adopts a special motion condemning the Armenian Genocide.
- 2000 Death of painter Grigor Khanjyan. He was born in 1926 in Yerevan.