Eight bearded conservative Muslims in traditional Pakistani garb took up post by the entrance to De Roma, a club in Antwerp, this past Saturday night. The club was hosting two Moroccan groups that day. The men advised visitors against attending the performances, since they see them as haram.
The men, which according to some are connected to a Pakistani mosque, divided up into groups. Some stood by De Roma, others took up position by the tram stop. They spoke in Arabic to people of immigrant origin who wanted to enter De Roma.
Tickets were even taken away from some of the younger party-goers. Workers of De Roma tried to talk to the men, but without result.
"Music is haram," said one of the men. "Music makes you drink, smoke and use drugs and makes you crazy in your head. This sort of western function is bad."
Many onlookers were indignant by the aggressive and forceful manner in which the men set to work. "Those people are crazy, we live in a democracy and we are free to do what we want," said a youth from Antwerp. "According to Islam, every Muslim decides on his own what he does or permits. Their behavior is horrible."
Other onlookers reacted more cautiously. "They represent the religion and deserve respect."
It is unclear how many visitors had been convinced.
The conservative Muslims hung around De Roma the whole evening till a group of Moroccan youth burst into the entrance hall. When their entrance was refused since they had no tickets they smashed one of the entrance doors into smithereens. The police arrived at the scene but there was nobody there to catch by then. Is is unclear whether there is a connection between the conservative Muslims and the behavior of the youth.
Source: Gazet van Antwerp (Dutch)