Germany mulls ‘mosque tax’ to cut out foreign funding

Germany mulls ‘mosque tax’ to cut out foreign funding

Support is growing in Germany for a “mosque tax” to make Islamic institutions less dependent on potentially anti-democratic or “radical” foreign funding sources, a media report said on Sunday.

The federal government sees it as “a possible path”, according to an answer to a parliamentary query, the Welt am Sonntag newspaper reported. 

 Several of Germany’s 16 states had also signalled support in principle for the idea which would mirror Germany’s voluntary Christian “church tax”, the newspaper said.   

Concern has grown in Germany about the influence of foreign funding sources on mosques for the country’s estimated five million Muslims, who hail mostly from Turkey and Arab countries.

In other cases, some mosques have come under police scrutiny or been closed for preaching radical and militant Islamist ideas.   Welt am Sonntag said that, in the newspaper’s own survey, several states had affirmed that mosque communities in Germany should be able to finance themselves. 

 The interior ministry of the regional state of Mecklenburg-Western Pomerania had said it was open to “mosque financing based on the church model” to reduce foreign influence, including “the danger of possible radicalisation”.

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