Lombardy, FOB (Freedom of Belief): "A liberty-destroying law against mosques, the right to pray is forbidden”

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3 February 2015 — "A liberty-destroying law forbidding to thousands of Lombard citizens – Muslims and non Muslims alike – the right to pray”. This is how the Steering Committee of FOB (European Federation for Freedom of Belief) voices its strong disagreement about the “anti-mosques law”, currently at the center of controversies in Lombardy.

“The unacceptable form of discrimination contained in the new law  manifests itself in a form of religious prohibitionism, whose only outcome will be that of a “clandestine” expression of the believers’ sentiment: with just one strike the proposal of the Lega Party succeeds in jeopardizing on one side security, and on the other, human rights.

To hinder this far the regulation and regularization of faiths on the territory, in fact, can only lead to lesser transparency. A decision that hits the bona-fide communities, eager to operate under the sunlight, without affecting in any way fundamentalism and extremism”, continues the statement of FOB.

“In addition to infringing the right of freedom of religion and thought, the law gratuitously accentuates the disparity between the Catholic Church and the other religious denominations, to the detriment of interreligious dialogue. The obligation to install surveillance cameras in places of worship, also forces the believers to undergo a kind of monitoring of ideological nature.

After the closure of 23 Evangelic churches in 2013, today, with this further tightening, once again fruit of the moral panic against Islamic communities, Lombardy Region confirms a disturbing anti-constitutional drift, already sanctioned by the Constitutional Court with regards to the former regional law, that increasingly stands between the principle of equality of religious denominations and its effective implementation, with all the risks that this rift entails, both for the social cohesion and for the so much proclaimed security”.