Norway’s Muslim leaders urged to reach out to gays

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The Islamic Council of Norway has asked imams to listen to the country’s gays. The Council do not want homosexuals, Muslim or not, to be in the closet.

Last week the Islamic Council of Norway’s met with SV’s homo-network, where they spoke of homosexual Muslims in Norway.

This is the first time the Islamic Council met with homosexual representatives to debate on this issue.

“They live in Norway, a democratic country, and they are free to come out,” said Senaid Kobilica of the Islamic council.

He stressed that nobody should live in fear and points to violent incidents where homosexuals were beaten due to the sexual inclination.

“Most of all they need somebody to speak with.

“Imams must therefore be open to listen to homosexual Muslims.”

“We recommend that everybody respect homosexuals and lesbians”, said Mr Kobilica.

However, the head of the Islamic Council, thinks it’s incompatible to be a homosexual and a believing Muslim.

“The imams should listen to homosexuals and to their concerns. But naturally we will also inform them about Islamic thought and how it relates to homosexuality,” he said.

In August the Children and Equality Minister, Anniken Huitfeldt, criticised the Islamic Council for not rejecting the death sentence against homosexuals.

“We stress that the Islamic Council of Norway rejects the death sentence for homosexuals in Norway, but we don’t want to go into legislation in other countries,” said Mr Kobilica.

The Islamic Council is an umbrella organisation for the Islamic faith societies that represents 70,00 Norwegian Muslims.