Increasing Muslim Population Causes Tensions in Public Life

February 24, 2005

Source: The Christian Science Monitor

On February 24, 2005 The Christian Science Monitor reported, "Religion's place in public life has shot to the top of the agenda in France, and in the rest of Europe, for one reason: Islam, and the growing millions of people on the Continent who practice it. Shocked by the discovery of Islamic terrorist networks on their soil, Europeans have suddenly woken up to the existence of an often marginalized Muslim minority that takes religion more seriously than they do. Today, the relationship between native Europeans and their Muslim neighbors is fraught with tension. Mistrust on both sides threatens to explode into violence. Late last year, arsonists destroyed two mosques and a Muslim school in the Netherlands after an Islamic radical there was arrested for murdering filmmaker Theo van Gogh, who had criticized Muslim treatment of women.