Tuesday, September 6, 2011

Kosovo Goverment Bans Religion in Schools

As the holy month of Ramadan closed, in a move that has angered some, the Kosovo government voted against changing the ban on headscarves and a motion to add religious instructions in schools.  Kosovo while having a Muslim majority is secular with a strong separation of "church and state".

The confirmation of the headscarf ban will no doubt lead to more frustration and increasing anti-government rhetoric the demonstrators for establishing a landmark mosque in the center of Pristina who have been protesting the past few months.  The demonstrators point to the construction of the Catholic Cathedral in the center of town as a marginalization of the Muslim faithful as they do not have a large symbol of their faith (on a side note, the author has heard that the Vatican purchased the land where the cathedral has been built, it wasn't freely given by the Kosovo government.).  Although there are 22 mosques in Pristina, the group says that there is not enough room to accomodate the faithful and are demanding that the government allocate land for the construction of the mosque.