Swiss Minaret Ban Reflects Fear, Violates Rights

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Swiss voters’ passage of a referendum banning the construction of minarets next to mosques in Switzerland has unleashed international outcry from rights advocates and thrown a harsh light on European countries’ efforts to integrate immigrant populations. The nationalist Swiss Peoples’ Party sponsored the vote, claiming that minarets represent the first steps toward encroaching radical Islam and the threat of Sharia law in Switzerland. The referendum was opposed by the government and widely expected to fail. Instead, 57 percent of voters approved the measure. The ban comes into effect immediately. Switzerland is home to only four mosques with minarets, and Muslims […]

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