Austria to deport 60 Turkish imams and close 7 mosques

Austria’s conservative Chancellor Sebastian Kurz announced that his country will deport the imams financed by foreign countries and close 7 mosques.

Austrian Chancellor Sebastian Kurz announced that the country will be deporting 60 imams and their families with ties to Turkey as part of the “fight against political Islam”.

Kurz said 7 mosques will also be closed and that this decision has been taken particularly in relation with children dressed in military uniforms to reenact an Ottoman era war in Turkish mosques.

The Chancellor held a press conference and said, “Paralle societies, political Islam and radicalization have no place in our country.”

One of the mosques where children were put in military uniforms is a mosque in Vienna that operates under the Turkish government. Photographs from the play where children reenacted the Battle of Çanakkale had been published on the center-left Falter in June.

These images had been met with protest from most all circles in the Austrian political class. The photographs showed children in fatigues lined up and giving military salutes while they waved Turkish flags. In another photograph, there were children lying on the ground covered with flags, depicting those who lost their lives in Çanakkale.

The mosque in question is ran by the Austrian Turkish-Islamic Union directly under Turkey’s Religious Affairs Directorate.