Islamophobia Even During a Pandemic? Pig's Head Mounted on German Mosque's Door

Czech Republic Brno Mosque Vandalized
A vandalized mosque in Czech Republic Twitter / The Nawaz Ali

Even in these trying times when the entire world is busy fighting the coronavirus pandemic and its consequences, it was business as usual for some anti-social elements in Germany who seem to have been hell-bent on spreading religious hatred despite the curfews and lockdowns in place.

In an incident that seems to be promoting the "Islamophobic" mentality, intended to hurt the sentiments of the Muslim community, two unidentified miscreants placed the head of a pig on the door of a mosque in a city in Germany on the night of Saturday, May 16.

Pig's Head Mounted on German Mosque's Door

Turkish media reported on Sunday, May 17, that surveillance cameras at the 'Fatih Mosque' which is run by the Turkish-Islamic Union for Religious Affairs (DITIB) in the southern German city of Vaihingen, recorded the incident where the a pig's head was mounted on the door of the mosque by two perpetrators who were seen driving a company van from a neighboring city.

The footage also shows that the two vandals took photos of their dastardly act soon after attaching the pig's head onto the main entrance of the mosque. The unidentified miscreants are said to be between 25 years and 30 years of age.

Investigation is On

The members of the mosque who arrived at the mosque after about an hour after the incident took place, were shocked to see a pig's head hanging from the mosque door, and immediately called the police to launch an investigation. The mosque's head Latif Pekmezci, was "appalled" at the attack and condemned the act strong, the reports said.

According to a statement issued by the Fatih Mosque, the state and federal chairs of the DITIB, and the Turkish Ambassador to Germany, Mehmet Erkan Öner, visted the mosque on the following afternoon, where the head of the police informed the ambassador about the investigation.

Turkey Condemns Incident

Several of Turkey's top religious leaders and government officials have condemned the act including Turkey's Minister of Justice, Abdulhamiy Gül who called the act the "latest example of racist hatred towards Muslims" in a tweet on Monday, May 18.

Turkey's Foreign Minister Mevlüt Çavuşoğlu also took to Twitter to the condemn the act saying that the "ugly attack" is an example of racism and hostility against Islam in Europe.

"Even during the holy month of Ramadan and the epidemic, racism and hostility against Islam continues in Europe. The symbol used in this ugly event actually depicts this sickly mentality," he said in a tweet on Monday, May 18.

Denouncing the perpetrators' "sick mentality," the minister urged that the they be caught immediately.

Rising Islamophobic Attacks in Germany

Over the years, Germany has witnessed growing "Islamophobia" – a term that describes the mentality or fear, hatred, or prejudice against Islam or Muslims generally, especially in the context of geopolitical sense or as the source of terrorism.

Several "Islamophobic" attacks similar to the aforementioned (those targeting mosques), have become more frequent in Germany, and hatred toward Muslim migrants and refugees, who arrive from war-torn countries like Syria and Iraq, in recent times has been triggered by far-right parties which exploit on the locals' feats over Islam and its often misunderstood terrorism angle.

Last year, in a similar incident, a pig's head and several bags containing blood were placed on the site of a mosque in the city of Mönchengladbach which is located west of the river Rhine, halfway between Düsseldorf and the Dutch border.

In another similar attack, a pig's head and several hooves were left at the site of a planned mosque in Rostock.

Reportedly, as many as 184 attacks on mosques were recorded in Germany in 2019, with at least one attack occurring on every alternate day.

The Islamophobic incidents in Germany are quite alarming especially considering the fact that the country of over 80 million, has the second-largest Muslim population on Western Europe after France, and most of the country's estimated 4.7 million Muslims are of Turkish origin.