A Norwegian politician says he ‘doesn’t give a toss’ about human rights, mosques should be banned from broadcasting the call to prayer.
Jon Helgheim, immigration spokesman for Progress Party, part of Oslo’s ruling two-party coalition, said the country’s residents needed ‘peace and quiet’.
He rejected arguments that banning the religious announcement being played over loudspeakers would violate the European Convention on Human Rights.
‘I don’t give a toss what human rights provisions say in this case,’ he told Vårt Land.
‘What I care about is that people get peace and quiet in their neighborhoods, and that means not being disturbed by the call to prayer.
‘If there are conflicting provisions in the Convention on Human Rights, I simply don’t care, because it’s completely stupid.’
Previous pushes, including by former Progress Party leader Carl Hagen, were scuttled by the Ministry of Justice citing the Convention.
Article 9 enshrines the right to freedom of thought, conscience, and religion in all signatory countries including Norway.
The party’s local branch in Buskerud county, west of Oslo, used the same argument but in reverse in its proposal to ban the call to prayer.
‘In several places in the country have now established regulations under which mosques have permission to issue the call to prayer over loudspeakers,’ it claimed, according to Local Norway.
‘A great many people perceive this as annoying and inappropriate. In Norway, we have freedom of religion, which should also include the right not to be exposed to public calls to prayer.’
The Buskerud county proposal will be voted on at the anti-immigration party’s national meeting this weekend, deciding whether to make its formal policy.
Despite allegations that mosques were planning to broadcast the call to prayer, neither newspaper could find any evidence of this.
Over the border, the Fittja mosque in southern Stockholm began issuing the call to prayer on Fridays, and last year a mosque in Karlskrona got permission to broadcast all five calls a day.
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