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Hessian state government: Muezzin calls do not need a permit

WIESBADEN. According to the Hessian state government, muezzin calls are also possible without a permit. “Contrary to the assumption of the questioner, no approval is required for the Muslim call to prayer, with or without loudspeaker; Approvals have therefore not been granted and can therefore not be withdrawn or revoked,” replied the black-green state government to a request from the AfD parliamentary group.

The reason given in the answer was that the loudspeakers used for the Islamic call to prayer were systems that did not require a permit. The government does not have an overview of the Hessian municipalities in which the muezzin call is sounding.

The background to the request was, among other things, a ruling by the Münster Higher Administrative Court , which had decided in autumn that the Ditib community in the city of Oer-Erkenschwick may again call out to prayer over the loudspeaker. A resident had previously sued against the immission control exemption granted by the city and was right in the first instance.

"No right to be spared from deviating statements of faith"
In its inquiry, the AfD had complained that the Islamic call to prayer took place “in many cases with massive disapproval on the part of the affected, non-Muslim population, who saw the muezzin call as an expression of Islamic dominance and a violation of their own religious and cultural identity”.

The opposition party also raised concerns about whether the muezzin call would not constitute an impairment in terms of negative religious freedom. This is understood to mean the freedom not to have a belief or not to have to make a religious creed. However, the Hessian government saw it differently: "In a society that gives space to different beliefs, there is no right to be spared from contact with deviating beliefs or religious symbols, even under the aspect of so-called negative religious freedom."

The foreign prayer calls repeatedly cause political debates. The Greens in Gelsenkirchen recently spoke out in favor of a public muezzin call and submitted a corresponding motion to the integration council.

Source: Junge Freiheit
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