Controversial Muslim Leader OK In Rotterdam

Muslim scholar Tariq Ramadan was hired by the city of Rotterdam to “help lift the multicultural dialogue to a higher level.” The scholar supposedly was to lead public debates which are aimed at bringing together people from different backgrounds and cultures in the Netherlands. Last month, a gay magazine, Gay krant, charged that Tariq Ramadan had made homphobic and mysogenistic statements on tapes that were distributed to the Mulsim community. Critics charge that Ramadan says one thing in Arabic to Muslims and another to the Dutch community of Christians. However, the city of Rotterdam, after investigating the allegations, said there was no evidence to support claims against him, and extended his contract for two years.

Ramadan’s basic meesage if that Islam and European culture do not have to be at odds and he wants development of what is termed, European Islam. Right wing party leader, Bas van Tijn, of WD, argues that Ramadan is not qualified to bridge communities because he does not speak Dutch. If he does lack knowledge of Dutch, it does seem unusual to appoint him to head a drive to bridge communities.