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Passion Islam I October 2009 ORLD NEWSW I 17
Billboards encourage
understanding of Islam
A campaign is being launched in
Silicon Valley to educate people
about Islam. The campaign includes
billboards and ads in bus shelters.
The billboards feature the word
“Islam” in big, bold letters, and a
telephone number people can call for
more information.
“We want to promote an opportunity
for people to clear misconceptions and
also we would like to promote mutual
understanding,” said a spokesman
for the Bay Area chapter of Islamic
Circle of North America. He worries
that, even on the eighth anniversary
of the September 11th terror attacks,
Muslims continue to face struggles in
their battle for acceptance in society.
“We want people to know that Islam
is not synonymous with terrorism.
We are Muslim, we are American,
we are hard-working, family-oriented
A similar campaign in San
Francisco earlier this year generated
8,000 calls for more information
about Islam.
Belgian schools ban
New Mosque With
Islamic Architecture
Muslim veil in classes
Opens in Dubai
”Al-Hagh” new mosque constructed
Dutch-language public schools them and the remainder giving no
based on traditional Islamic
in Belgium will ban the wearing formal guidance.
architecture was opened on
of Muslim veils in classes, school The Flemish school board said
September 23 in Al-Zarqa region of
officials in the Flanders region. the ban in communal schools would
The ban affects 700 schools in the be introduced gradually to give time
According to WAM, Fahd Al-
northern region of Flanders, including to those establishments which have
Hajari director of Services and
some in Brussels. not banned the veil to do so.
Engineering Office of UAE mosques
It follows protests after two schools Schools in Flanders that
said, “Al-Hagh mosque has been set
in Antwerp this month joined other are financed by other Belgian
up on an 18 thousand meter site. It
schools where the veil is already communities -- mostly Catholic
will seat some 550 worshippers”.
banned. schools run by municipalities -- are
“The mosque with two minarets
Responding to a complaint by not bound by the order.
and a mosalla specified for women,
a student at one of the schools, School authorities in the main
was financially supported by Isma’il
Belgium’s highest administrative Flemish town of Antwerp announced
‘Aghil ‘Abbasi, Dubai citizen,” he
tribunal ruled that schools could not a ban on the veil from the start of the
take such decisions on their own. next academic year.
Al-Hajari added that the
Belgian schools have previously A similar debate is underway in
mosque marking traditional Islamic
enjoyed autonomy in such decisions, Belgium’s French-speaking Wallonia,
architecture will provide services to
with one third authorizing the wearing and the Brussels capital region.
non-UAE citizens of Dubai mostly
of Muslim veils, another forbidding
residing in Al-Zarqa region.
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