|Islam in Germany|
Owing to labour migration in the 1960s and political refugees since the 1970s, Islam has become a visible religion in Germany. In 2009 there are 4.3 million Muslims in Germany (5.4% of the population). |
In 2006 there were 15,000 German converts. Islam is the largest minority religion. 63.2% of Muslims are of Turkish origin followed by groups from Pakistan, countries of former Yugoslavia, Arab countries, Iran and Afghanistan. The Red Mosque at Schwetzingen Castle is Germany's oldest mosque constructed between 1779-1791.
Muslims first came to Germany as part of diplomatic, military and economic relations between Germany and the Ottoman Empire in the 18th century. 20 Muslim soldiers served under Frederick William I of Prussia, at the beginning of the 18th century. In 1745, Frederick II of Prussia established a unit of Muslims in the Prussian army consisting of Bosniaks, Albanians and Tatars. In 1760 a Bosniak corps was established with about 1,000 men.
In 1798 a Muslim cemetery was established in Berlin. The first German Muslim educational institution for children was established in 1932. Hitler repeatedly expressed the view that Islam would have been more compatible to Germans than Christianity.
Many German federal states introduced legislation recently banning head-scarves for teachers. 1,200 institutions are used as mosques, 159 with domes and minarets. 128 mosques are under construction.
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