Islam and Europe, A Compatibility Problem: Italy PM Georgia Meloni

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New Delhi: Italy’s Prime Minister Giorgia Meloni has said that Islamic culture and the values and rights of European civilisation have a “compatibility problem”. Meloni’s controversial remark came at an event organised by her right-wing, ultra-conservative Brothers of Italy party, which was attended by UK Prime Minister Rishi Sunak and billionaire Elon Musk.

“I believe there is a problem of compatibility between Islamic culture or a certain interpretation of Islamic culture and the rights and values of our civilisation,” she said. “It does not escape my mind that most of the Islamic cultural centres in Italy are financed by Saudi Arabia.” 

Meloni also criticised Saudi Arabia’s rigid Sharia law under which apostasy and homosexuality are criminal offences. Sharia law, commonly referred to as Islamic law, constitutes a set of principles and regulations rooted in the Quran and the Hadith, representing the foundational religious texts of Islam.

“Sharia means lapidation for adultery and the death penalty for apostasy and homosexuality. I believe that these should be raised, which does not mean generalising on Islam. It means raising the problem that there is a process of Islamisation in Europe that is very distant from the values of our civilisation,” she said. 

During his visit to Rome, Sunak backed Meloni’s migration approach. Sunak’s controversial plan to send asylum seekers to Rwanda has been met with a barrage of legal challenges and accusations of inhumane treatment. Meloni, on the other hand, has drawn flak for her attempts to limit the activities of charity rescue ships operating in the Mediterranean Sea.

“If we do not tackle this problem, the numbers will only grow. It will overwhelm our countries and our capacity to help those who actually need our help the most,” he said. “Making that deterrent credible will mean doing things differently, breaking from consensus. And both Giorgia and I are prepared to do that.”

The two leaders also met Albanian Prime Minister Edi Rama to discuss migration. 

(Except for the headline, this story has not been edited by The Kashmir Monitor staff and is published from a syndicated feed.)

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