Germany's Turkish community expressed 'disappointment' Monday at newly-appointed Interior Minister Hans- Peter Friedrich playing down the role of Islam in Germany.
'There is no historical evidence for the notion that Islam belongs to Germany,' Friedrich said at a press conference on Thursday, just hours after he was appointed interior minister.
That comment had caused 'great disappointment' amongst local Islamic organizations, Turkish community leader Kenan Kolat was quoted as saying in Monday's Berliner Zeitung newspaper.
But Kolat remained sceptical of a promise by Friedrich to continue a series of discussions with Islamic leaders, known as the Islam Conference, that took place under his predecessor Thomas de Maiziere. The next such meeting has been scheduled for March 29.
The Turkish community leader said he hoped this was a serious offer, and that Friedrich was prepared to participate in an 'honest debate' about the historic influence of Islam on Europe.