France expels mosque leader

France has expelled the Turkish-born prayer leader of a Paris mosque after the Interior Ministry accused him of heading a group advocating terrorism.

    The Muslim community in France is five-million strong

    Midhat Guler, who was placed under house arrest last week, was put on a plane to Turkey on Thursday.

    "This expulsion is due to the threat the person concerned poses to public order," an Interior Ministry statement said.

    "Mr Guler is in effect in charge in France of an extremist Islamic Turkish movement that advocates resorting to violence and terrorism known as 'Kaplan'," it said.

    France, whose five-million-strong Muslim community is Europe's largest, has about 1500 Islamic prayer leaders. Most are poorly trained and many speak only Arabic.

    Promoting compatibility

    The French government has stepped up efforts to promote imam training centres so that prayer leaders preach an Islam compatible with a modern Western democracy.

    Last month, the government experienced an embarrassing setback when a court ruled as illegal its decision to expel an imam from the southeastern city of Lyon after he justified wife-beating in a magazine article.

    Abd al-Kadir Buzian, who holds French nationality, was expelled to his native country of Algeria on 21 April and had his French resident's permit confiscated.

    But on Monday, he said he had been given a visa allowing him to return to France.

    SOURCE: Agencies


    YOU MIGHT ALSO LIKE

    'If she never remembered me again': Loving someone with dementia

    'If she never remembered me again': Loving someone with dementia

    'I imagined there were thousands of such thoughts in that room, clinging to the ceiling like helium balloons.'

    What it means to love a dead child

    What it means to love a dead child

    You must forget all you thought you knew about grief when the landscape of your life has been demolished.

    'Butchered': The Kenyan FGM clinic serving Europeans

    'Butchered': The Kenyan FGM clinic serving Europeans

    Kenya banned FGM in 2011, but Europeans still bring their daughters to underground clinics there to be cut.