07:21 GMT28 February 2021
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    ST. PETERSBURG (Sputnik) - The upcoming fasting month of Ramadan risks bringing about an uproar among the German Muslim population if the government bans them from visiting mosques for prayers due to the COVID-19 social distancing rules, Albert Breininger, a member of the rightist Alternative for Germany (AfD) party, said.

    "The Muslim holiday of Ramadan can become a problem during the quarantine, as already now they breach the self-isolation rules", Breininger said.

    He said a notorious precedent had taken place in Berlin recently when about 300 people gathered in front of a mosque upon hearing the public call to prayer. According to the politician, Muslim religious leaders have talked municipal German authorities into letting them use loudspeakers to summon worshipers for prayers during the coronavirus epidemic, which was not particularly welcomed by people professing other beliefs who live nearby mosques. 

    "The German government is going to turn a blind eye on it during Ramadan, while the Muslim community will continue demonstrating power which will but cause uproar among others", Breininger continued.

    Heike Hansel, a lawmaker with the leftist Die Linke party, in turn, stated that "these extraordinary times we must not raise issues which deepen resentments, it would be really the wrong political sign".

    According to the AfD politician, however, the German government lacks "political will" to push its agenda and would instead make "big concessions", like building new mosques and allowing classes on Islam at schools, while trying to draw the media on its side.

    AfD's Breininger further opined that the government is "most likely" to loosen the quarantine during Ramadan, "due to financial and political pressure, as well as to avoid escalation in the society".

    The COVID-19 toll in Germany is 127,584 cumulative cases, including 3,254 fatalities, as of Wednesday, according to the Robert Koch Institute.

    Ramadan, the holy month in Islam when people of faith fast during daytime and gather for group meals and prayers after sunset, is scheduled to last from 23 April to 23 May this year.

    Tags:
    restrictions, coronavirus, COVID-19, Ramadan, Alternative for Germany (AfD), Germany
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