A mosque has been shut down in northern France based on allegations that the Imam’s preachings were radical, incite hatred, violence, and “defended jihad”.
France authorities ordered the closure of the mosque located in Beauvais, a town of 50000 people, located about 100 kilometers north of Paris, for a period of six months, reported AFP.
The action comes two weeks after Interior Minister Gerald Darmanin said that he had initiated the procedure to close the site claiming that the imam there “is targeting Christians, homosexuals, and Jews” in his sermons, which he deemed as “unacceptable”.
The procedure to be followed in such cases is that local authorities are legally bound to launch a 10-day investigation before taking an action but AFP was informed that the mosque would be shut within the next two days.
A local media house reported that the Imam was a recent convert to Islam and quoted a lawyer of the management saying that his remarks had been “taken out of context”. He also informed that the imam had been suspended from his duties following a letter from the authorities.
Earlier this year, the French government had announced that measures would be taken to ensure that places of worship do not spread radical Islamic propaganda. The Interior Ministry had said that six sites were being probed with a view to closing them down on the basis of French laws against extremism and Islamist separatism.