Islam is part of Europe, not something from outside: ex-Portugal minister

Bruno Macaes says Islam can help restore diversity, vibrancy in Europe

Anadolu Agency June 21, 2021

Igreja Matriz de Mértola, the uniquely preserved old mosque in Portugal. The Muslim Times has the best collection for the Muslim heritage and to refute Islamophobia. Suggested reading: How Islam Taught Medieval Christian Europe Religious and Political Tolerance

Islam is part of European history and culture, and not something from outside, a former minister of Portugal said.

“The glorious history in Europe … I hope it can be understood, and that we can move toward not just having a good relationship with Islam, but actually understand that it is part of European history and culture … in the Balkans, Spain and other parts, and now in many European cities with large populations,” Bruno Macaes, who served as the Europe minister in the Portuguese government between 2013 and 2015, told Anadolu Agency on the sidelines of Antalya Diplomacy Forum.

“So it’s not a foreign religion, it is a part of ourselves, and can help restore some diversity, vibrancy to Europe. We need that.”

Islam, considered Europe’s fastest growing religion, has presence on the continent since the 8th century. Muslims established an illustrious civilization in Spain, and later expanded toward south-eastern Europe.

Also read: Pakistan, Canada in unison against Islamophobia

Many regions saw mass killings, expulsions and forced conversion of Muslims but elements of their civilization and culture such as architecture, food, music and language, have remained.

Asked about the controversial remarks of French President Emmanuel Macron on Islam, Macaes, currently a senior adviser at Flint Global, said: “It’s not up to the politicians to decide whether religions are in crisis or not, it is to the fate of every religion.”

About rising Islamophobia in Europe, Macaes said “yes, it’s a big problem,” and “very concerning” since it is not limited to France, pointing to racism and hate toward minorities in countries such as Austria.

“In Austria, there was this idea of having a law against political Islam and no one knows very well what political Islam means in practice,” he said. “What worries me is that this is not limited to isolated incidents, but sometimes it comes from politicians themselves.”

Source: ‘Islam is part of Europe, not something from outside’ (

2 replies

    • It is not wise to label regionalism upon the religion . True religion is above the regional boundries . Religion strengthen the personal relationship between an individual and his Creator . As this bound gets strengthened the nourishment of human values and services start the journey towards new heights . Religion shapes the human being in such a way where there is peace , fraternity , love , justice , acceptance of differences , forgiveness and atmost strive to make others lives easy and prosperous . Religion is the other name of sacrifice and service . When we see the religion in this broader concept and study the purpose mentioned by the founder of the religion ; we reach at the coclusion that one may be a good French along with the follower of the true religion . Every good and beneficial guideline addresses to all . This is why in the field of physics , Sir Issac Newton is as much important for americans as for europeans . Problem is with the distorted religion . What I have written , if anyone wants to see , he must feel the echo of LOVE FOR ALL , HATRED FOR NONE which is the explanation of the Quranic terms RABBUL ALAMIN for God and RAHMATUL ALAMIN for the prophet of Islam means God of all and prophet for all .

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