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September 25, 2016 / 22 Elul, 5776
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Muslim Voters Change Europe

Islam in Europe

Photo Credit: Serge Attal/Flash 90

In Britain, a new research report entitled, “Degrees of Separation: Ethnic minority voters and the Conservative Party,” shows that 47% of Muslims say they have affinity for the Labour Party, while on 5% say they identify with the Conservatives. During the 2010 elections, Muslim voters were the deciding factor in 82 constituencies.

In the London Borough of Tower Hamlets, Muslim voters elected the Bangladeshi-born Lutfur Rahman as their mayor. He is linked to the Islamic Forum of Europe (IFE), an Islamist group dedicated to changing the “very infrastructure of society, its institutions, its culture, its political order and its creed … from ignorance to Islam.” Since taking office, Rahman has stocked the public libraries in Tower Hamlets with books and DVDs containing the extremist sermons of banned Islamist preachers.

Also in Britain, Labour Party MP Jim Fitzpatrick recently warned that his party has been infiltrated by radical Muslims who want to create an “Islamic social and political order” there. Muslims, he said, are “placing people within the political parties, recruiting members to those political parties, trying to get individuals selected and elected so they can exercise political influence and power, whether it’s at local government level or national level.” He added: “They are completely at odds with Labour’s program, with our support for secularism.”

In Belgium, Muslims now make up one-quarter of the population of Brussels. In real terms, the number of Muslims in Brussels — where half of all Muslims in Belgium currently live — has reached 300,000, meaning that the self-styled “Capital of Europe” is now the most Islamic city in Europe.

In practical terms, Islam mobilizes more people in Brussels than does the Roman Catholic Church, and demographers expect that Muslims will comprise the majority of the population of Brussels by 2030.

In Belgium as a whole, new research from the Itinera Institute forecasts that by 2060, 60% of the Belgian population will be foreign born, which will have clear implications for Belgian politics.

In Norway, new statistics show that immigrants will make up almost half of Oslo’s population by 2040. The study, the first ever projection of immigration trends to be published in Norway, shows that the largest cities will also see the biggest upsurge in immigrant numbers. In the country as a whole, the immigrant population is expected to jump from 12% to 24%, or from 600,000 people today to 1.5 million in 2040.

In Spain, the Socialist Party recently attempted to pass a law in parliament that would have enabled more than 500,000 Moroccans residing in Spain to vote in Spanish municipal elections. If enacted, the measure would have ensured permanent Socialist control over all Spanish towns and cities with significant Muslim minorities. The measure was derailed in November 2011, when, in the general election, the Socialists were ousted from power.

Originally published by Gatestone Institute http://www.gatestoneinstitute.org.

Soeren Kern

About the Author: The writer is a Senior Fellow at the New York-based Gatestone Institute. He is also Senior Fellow for European Politics at the Madrid-based Grupo de Estudios Estratégicos / Strategic Studies Group, one of the oldest and most influential foreign policy think tanks in Spain.


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