Final results show that over 57 percent of voters backed the proposal in a referendum that was held today following an initiative by a right wing political party. Turnout was reported at about 55 percent.
Switzerland, home to some 400,000 Muslims, already has four minarets attached to mosques that will remain even after today’s referendum.
The Swiss government had urged voters to reject the proposed ban on new minarets, saying it would violate religious freedom and human rights, as well as potentially provoking Islamist radicalism and harming Switzerland’s image. But in a statement today, the government said it respects the decision of the voters.
“A majority of the Swiss people and the cantons have adopted the popular initiative against the construction of minarets. The Federal Council respects this decision,” the statement said.
The controversial proposal to ban minarets was brought up by the right wing Swiss People’s party, which says minarets are symbols of rising Muslim political and religious power that could eventually turn Switzerland into an Islamic nation.
Lord, what next? A ban on Hindu temples, gurudwaras and synagogues? Oops! I forgot, synagogues were banned by a neighbouring country with disastrous consequences…If this is the Swiss way of tackling the real problem – the integration of Muslim immigrants – then, I’m sorry to say, the Swiss are idiots…The ban will only provoke religious hostility and intolerance and thereby further radicalize Swiss Muslims…Actually, I’m wrong here…After re-reading the article I’ve realized that this ban is not about integration but about getting rid of Muslims…
This referendum shows how deep rooted religious tolerance and liberty are in Europe…Long live the Swiss system of direct democracy! Long live cuckoo clocks and cuckoo laws!
P.S. The call to prayer is already banned…
Most of the comments on articles dealing with this issue support the ban…Examples:
- “Since when do Muslims treat Christians FAIR in Muslim countries? We are TOO fair to muslims in this country, we need to show the same disrespect here as you do to us in your home countries.” (SKY)
- “Oh, stop being so analytical! What a wonderful result, and may the rest of Europe follow as soon as possible! And not only with minarets as the target.” (Telegraph.co.uk)
- “A sensible result from a sensible people in my view.” (Telegraph.co.uk)
- “What is wrong with not wanting to be around muslims? They are dangerous and have a problem with the American way of life. Get rid of the minarets. Check. Get rid of the moslems. ????” (Telegraph.co.uk)