Academic Gets Death Threats Over Gay-Friendly Mosque

Nasir al-Mulk

A Muslim academic has vowed to continue with plans to launch a women and gay-friendly mosque in South Africa despite having received death threats.


Taj Hargey, director of the “forward-thinking” Muslim Educational Centre of Oxford has said that the Open Mosque will welcome all genders, religions and sexual orientations when it opens in Wynberg, Cape Town this week.

Both Sunni and Shia Muslims will worship at the same services.

Taj Hargey, professor of Islamic Studies and African history at Oxford University

Hargey, who is a professor of Islamic Studies and African history also told reporters, “I do not endorse homosexual living, but I do not condemn them as people. We will, however, welcome gay people and discuss topical subjects like sexuality, politics and others.”

He also said that the Open Mosque has been developed in response to growing Islamic radicalism in Africa. “South Africans have become Arabised, they think they must wear the burka, must have face masks, that men must wear pyjama dresses,” said Hargey, reports The Telegraph.

“They think that is the only version of Islam.”

Despite having received “a lot of death threats”, Hargey says he has also received much postive feedback. “A 77-year-old grandmother just called me and said: ‘All my life I’ve been waiting for this, for the first time I can go to a mosque and be warmly welcome,'” he said.

The Open Mosque will open this Friday in Wynberg, Cape Town.

© 2014 GCN (Gay Community News). All rights reserved.

0 comments. Please sign in to comment.