Oslo: Tabligh mosque recruiting among youth

Oslo: Tabligh mosque recruiting among youth

Several young Muslims from the Holmlia district in  Oslo told NRK there's active missionizing among young Muslim boys.

Young men with long beards and robes stop Muslim boys in the neighborhood or visit them at home and recruit them to the mosques.

"Some of the missionaries who have approached us, have had extreme attitudes towards Norwegians and also to other Muslim minorities like Shia and Ahmadiyya Muslims," says one of the youth NRK spoke with.  None of them wished their name or image be published.

They say that many of those recruited into radical Muslim communities were petty criminals in the past, also in the gang community.

Nadeem Butt (Labor), head of the district committee of the Søndre Nordstrand district confirms the phenomenon.

"There's some missionizing among Muslims,a nd we've had this type of missionizing here in the district in the past," says Butt.

He says that the missionaries are mostly Muslim men who turn to other Muslim men.

"They also approach Muslim boys out on the town," says Butt.

According to Butt the missionaries are linked to the local mosque in Holmlia, a mosque which belongs to the Tabliqi movement.  The movement belongs to the Wahabi denomination in Islam.

The Wahhabi denomination is the state religion in Saudi Arabia and is considered a radical Islamic movement.  Osama Bin-Laden and Al-Qaeda belong to this denomination.  Mohyeldeen Mohammed, the man who warned of a Norwegian 9/11 last week, also follows this denomination.

Q: "Do you think any of these missionaries can have some of the same radical attitudes as Mohyeldeen Mohammed?"

A: "I don't know what sort of mindset they have.  What I know is that what Mohyeldeen represents is rather extreme and uncommon in the Islamic context in Norway.  I know of nobody else in Norway who has expressed this type of extreme thoughts," he says.

Butt thinks it's OK that there's Islamic missionizing,as long as the missionaries keep to what is normal and acceptable.

Q: What is normal and acceptable?

A: That you can missionize for youth view and invite people to God's house and ask them to practice Islam, answers Butt.

Q: Do you think they keep within those limits?

A: I don't just think [so], I see that they do that, says Butt.

But the youth NRK meets in Holmlia are not alone in telling stories of young criminals who are becoming active in the mosque.

A boy who is still active in the mosque in Holmlia confirms this.  He says these boys were formerly in gangs, but that they've calmed down after becoming religious.

He also doesn't want to have his name published.

NRK didn't succeed in getting a comment on this issue from any representative of the mosque.

Source: NRK (Norwegian)

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