Ban Muslim symbols, says rightist
SALZBURG: The head of Austria’s far-right Freedom Party has called for a total ban on “fascistic Islam”.
Heinz Christian Strache told an audience in Salzburg he wanted to see a ban on Muslim symbols, something like the Austrian law that bans Nazi symbols. And he warned that Islam posed an existential threat to Europe. “Otherwise we Austrians, we Europeans, will come to an abrupt end.”
The Freedom Party is staunchly anti-immigrant. Stache said that “we need zero and minus immigration”. The country has received 130 000 claims for asylum since the summer of 2015. Most are former residents of Afghanistan, Syria and Iraq.
There are about 600 000 Muslims in Austria, and they’re facing a growing chorus of detractors. Recently, an Austrian cardinal (and a top candidate for pope in previous conclaves) asked: “Will there be an Islamic conquest of Europe? Many Muslims want that and say: Europe is at the end.” In December, an Austrian trade union suggested Muslims should be denied Christmas bonuses because “they are against all Christian traditions”. – Washington Post