Monday 23 Jan 2023
Rep: Ratna Ajeng Tejomukti / Red: Nashih Nashrulla
Swedish Muslim women protesting anti-Islam policies. Islam is growing rapidly amidst the Islamophobia campaign and the burning of the KoranPhoto credit: thegatewaypundit.com
Islam is growing rapidly amidst the Islamophobia campaign and the burning of the Koran
REPUBLIKA.CO.ID, JAKARTA- The entire Arab and Islamic world issued a condemnation of the burning of the Koran by Swedish-Danish right-wing extremists in the Swedish capital, Stockholm, Saturday (21/1/2023). The police allowed the leader of the Stram Kurs (Hard Line) Party, Rasmus Paludan, to burn a copy of the Koran outside the Turkish Embassy in Stockholm.
Although Islam has become the second official religion in Sweden, after Christianity. But now in Sweden there is still Islamophobia going on.
This action by the hardline politician Rasmus Paludan is not the only one that has happened. In 2020, he even burned several copies of the Koran to protest the spread of Islam and celebrate freedom of speech.
Rasmus Paludan launched a Quran burning tour across Sweden. The action provoked a strong reaction. In 2020, a large demonstration took place in Mamo, Sweden against the burning of the Koran.
Actually, how is the demographic map of Muslims in Sweden? It is estimated that there are 800,000 Muslims in Sweden, or about eight percent of Sweden’s 10.23 million population. Most of the Muslim population lives in large cities, with more than 60 percent living in the three major urban areas, Stockholm, Gothenburg and Malmo.
Sweden’s Muslim population is quite diverse, from more than forty different countries, from Turkey, Bosnia and Iran to Pakistan, Saudi Arabia and other African, Asian and European countries. The main Muslim population in Sweden is the Turkish population.
In the 1980s, they made up the majority of the Muslim population in Sweden, but currently only make up about 10 percent of the total Muslim population. However, the Turkish population retains the main source of Muslim political influence through an established and united lobby group.
The Iranian population is the second largest subgroup of ethnic Muslims, most of whom arrived after 1985 as refugees. Although many members of this population are more secular, one-sixth of the population is considered religious Muslims.
Other large populations include large numbers of Iraqis, many of whom are Kurds, remnants of the Iran-Iraq war and Saddam Hussein’s policies of ethnic cleansing. There is also a sizeable Lebanese population while the rest are from Morocco, Syria, Tunisia and Palestine.
Main populations from Africa include Somalis, Ethiopians. From the Balkans, there are about 40,000 Muslims from Bosnia, and a large number of refugees from the former Yugoslavia during the civil war.
Referring to Pew Research, the number of Muslims is predicted to jump to 1.1 million people or 11.1 percent of the population in 2050 in a minimal immigrant scenario.
Whereas in the maximum immigrant scenario, the number of Muslims is predicted to be 4.4 million or 30.6 percent of the total population. This data is the result of calculations by the Pew research institute which studies the growth of Muslims in Europe. Meanwhile, there is no official data on the number of Muslims from the Swedish government
There are six purpose-built mosques in Sweden, four Sunni Muslim Mosques in Stockholm, Malmo, Uppsala and Vasteras, one Shia Mosque in Trollhattan, and one Ahmadiyya mosque in Gothenburg.
Since there are very few of these purpose-built mosques, most Muslims in Sweden practice their faith in underground mosques. During Ramadan, mosques in Sweden are open to Muslims, but attendance is poor due to the country’s inherent weather.
In 2018, Sweden allowed mosques to call to prayer. The police gave the mosque permission to call the call to prayer for Friday prayers. However, this permit is only valid for one year.
Gotheburg Sweden Ahmadiyya Mosque