On 30th November, EFD hosted a discussion on “İntﻉgrati٥n made in Germany – lost between worldliness and values?“ at the Tiyatrom Theater in Berlin-Kreuzberg in cooperation with the German Green party. EFD Programme Director Ahmad Mansour and Cem Özdemir, co-chairman of the Bündnis90/DieGrünen (Greens), who had published a well-received article in Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung in August, discussed the challenges and opportunities of immigration for Germany. “We have to be clear about the values we want to communicate as a society”, Mansour noted, “the basis needs to be the German Basic Law”. “It is our holiest book”, Özdemir added, setting the framework for religious freedom, freedom of opinion and freedom from religion. The established Muslim associations, which are often very conservative, nationalistic or follow an Islamist ideology, should not be tasked with the integration of millions of refugees. Liberal and free thinking Muslims with all kinds of cultural backgrounds should be empowered to play a stronger role in politics and media. All of society needs to reach out to the newcomers, explain the written and unwritten rules in Germany and help refugees and immigrants to become an active part of society.
The full discussion can be viewed here (in German).