Open

Coming up

Don't miss

Replay


LATEST SHOWS

DEBATE

Europe's Plan for Putin - Will Russian Leader Bend After New Sanctions? (part 2)

Read more

DEBATE

Europe's Plan for Putin - Will Russian Leader Bend After New Sanctions?

Read more

FOCUS

Pakistan's Ahmadis living in fear of extremist attacks

Read more

WEB NEWS

Web users show solidarity with Iraqi Christians

Read more

THE INTERVIEW

Gilles Kepel, Islamic and Arab world specialist

Read more

BUSINESS DAILY

Argentina braced for another debt default

Read more

DEBATE

Too Late for Sanctions? Pressure Mounts on Russia over Ukraine (part 2)

Read more

DEBATE

Too Late for Sanctions? Pressure Mounts on Russia over Ukraine

Read more

MEDIAWATCH

'What would you do?'

Read more

  • US and EU slap Russia with fresh sanctions over Ukraine

    Read more

  • Scores killed as Israel ramps up Gaza bombardment

    Read more

  • Graphic: Ebola spreads across West Africa

    Read more

  • In pictures: ن - a sign of support for Iraq’s persecuted Christians

    Read more

  • Calls mount to ban France’s ‘violent’ Jewish Defence League

    Read more

  • Venezuela: Hugo Chavez’s ‘little bird’ strikes again

    Read more

  • France extradites suspected Jewish Museum shooter to Belgium

    Read more

  • Video: How tourism is helping Rwanda’s gorillas, ex-poachers

    Read more

  • Rare Sri Lankan leopard cubs born in French zoo

    Read more

  • France evacuates its nationals from Libya

    Read more

  • US says Russia violated arms treaty by testing cruise missile

    Read more

  • Argentina in last-ditch effort to avert default

    Read more

  • Karzai’s cousin killed in Afghan suicide attack

    Read more

  • Libya oil tanker fire blazes out of control

    Read more

  • In pictures: From Gaza to Mosul, bittersweet end of Ramadan for Muslims

    Read more

  • Moroccan police arrest French al Qaeda recruiter

    Read more

France

Marseille mega-mosque gets go-ahead

Text by News Wires

Latest update : 2012-06-19

A French appeals court approved Tuesday the construction of a large mosque in the city of Marseille, home to an estimated 250,000 Muslims. The mosque, seen as a symbol of Islam's growing presence in France, has attracted national controversy.

AFP - A French appeals court granted permission Tuesday for the building of a mega-mosque in the southern city of Marseille that has been touted as a symbol of Islam's growing place in France.

The court overturned an October ruling by Marseille's administrative tribunal that cancelled the project's construction permit for supposed failures to meet urban-planning requirements.

A community association led by a local butcher had filed a complaint against the building permit, saying the mosque project did not fit with the surrounding urban environment.

The project was granted a permit in September 2009 but construction was suspended following complaints from local residents and businesses.

The 22-million-euro ($28-million) project would see the Grand Mosque, boasting a minaret soaring 25-metres (82-feet) high and room for up to 7,000 worshippers, built in the city's northern Saint-Louis area.

Muslim leaders in the Mediterranean city had hailed the approval of the project as a key step in recognising the importance of Marseille's large Muslim community.

France's second city is home to an estimated 250,000 Muslims, many of whom flock to makeshift prayer houses in basements, rented rooms and dingy garages to worship.

Home to Europe's biggest Muslim minority, estimated at between five and six million, France has for years been debating how far it is willing to go to accommodate Islam, now the country's second religion.

The appeals court in December also rejected complaints against the mosque project filed by France's National Front (FN) party and another far-right group.

Date created : 2012-06-19

  • FRENCH ELECTIONS 2012

    'I’m Arab, a Muslim, and I vote Marine Le Pen'

    Read more

  • FRENCH POLITICS

    French Jews, Muslims unite in anger over halal meat row

    Read more

  • FRANCE

    Muslim and Jewish celebrations ‘should be French bank holidays’

    Read more

COMMENT(S)