Casablanca - Over 150 mosques across the UK held an open day for non-Muslims in the UK on Sunday to explain the basic pillars of Islam and showcase social projects that include charity.
Casablanca – Over 150 mosques across the UK held an open day for non-Muslims in the UK on Sunday to explain the basic pillars of Islam and showcase social projects that include charity.
After several mosques in Canada organized an open-day for Canadians, following the deadly shooting that targeted the Islamic Cultural Center of Quebec, mosques across the UK opened their doors to the British public on Sunday. The initiative, dubbed Visit My Mosque Day 2017, was part of an initiative of the Muslim Council of Britain (MCB) to bring members of different faiths together and this year’s edition is the third.
According to the MCB, the initiative makes an attempt at “transcending the negative news in the media (about Muslims), and provide access to the citizens of Britain, in order to explain the Islamic belief to them and introduce them to Muslims.”
150 mosques took part from England, Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland, including cities with large Muslim populations as well as small mosques in areas populated by few Muslims.
During this open day, the mosques exhibited boards explaining the basic concepts of Islam. As well, they distributed leaflets with information about Islam. Social action projects were showcased, involving food distribution, homelessness and other social issues.
This year’s edition coincides with the rising sentiment of Islamophobia in the world, nurtured by Donald Trump’s “irresponsible” statement against the Muslim community in the US during the previous US election campaign, and exacerbated by his executive order banning Muslims from 7 countries to enter the US.
Speaking about this, Harun Khan, secretary general of the Muslim Council of Britain in charge of the Visit My Mosque Day event, said: “As the world recoils at President Trump’s so called ‘Muslim Ban’ and the mass killing at a mosque in Canada, [Visit My Mosque day] is a much-needed antidote to the poisonous atmosphere we find ourselves in.”
Khan added that the event represented an opportunity for Muslims and non-Muslims in the UK “to come together and renew bonds of friendship.”
Marking this year’s edition was the presence of Jeremy Corbyn. The prominent British politician and current Leader of the Labour Party visited the Finsbury Park Mosque. On the occasion, he told the Telegraph that “It is very important to show that we are a multi-faith society.”
Corbyn said that he had been visiting the same mosque for decades and praised its organizers for the social causes they promote in the area, such as helping the homeless.