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Danish ‘Sharia council' voluntarily disbands

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The documentary series revealed the existence of a Sharia council at Fredens Moske in Aarhus. Photo: Axel Schütt/Scanpix
09:57 CET+01:00
A TV2 documentary series has led to the voluntary disbandment of a Sharia council and has caused the city of Aarhus to pull its support from a planned mega-mosque.
An Aarhus council consisting of leading members of Fredens Moske has been deciding whether Muslim couples can be divorced under Islamic law, the TV2 documentary series ‘Moskeerne bag sløret' (Mosques behind the veil) revealed.
 
After the existence of the so-called ‘Sharia council' came to light, members decided to voluntarily disband the council “out of respect for Danish values”. 
 
“The [Muslim] associations here have decided that it is important to combat all forms of parallel societies. That also means that the council that was here has broken itself up out of respect for Danish values,” Rabih Azad-Ahmad, an Aarhus Municipality spokesman, told TV2. 
 
The TV2 documentary series revealed that three members of the Sharia council told a woman that she could not divorce her husband even though she had been subjected to physical abuse. The clip was the latest in a long line of controversies to emerge from the series. Last week, hidden camera footage showed imams at the highly controversial Grimhøj Mosque saying that adulterers should be stoned and that children should be beaten for not praying.
 
The end to the Sharia council was not the only consequence of the documentary series. 
 
Aarhus Mayor Jacob Bundsgaard announced on Sunday that the city has pulled its support from plans to build a new mega-mosque in Aarhus. 

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“Religious freedom is an important principle in Denmark. But with the things that have come to light, I have a hard time seeing this project going through. The trust is gone,” he told TV2. 
 
The newest episode of TV2's programme, ‘Moskeerne bag sløret' (Mosques behind the veil), airs Tuesday night at 8.50pm.  

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