The use of loudspeakers for the Islamic call to prayer

An infringement upon negative religious freedom?


  • Thomas Schirrmacher


Switzerland, muezzin, church bells


The question of whether Muslims are allowed to build a minaret and the question of whether a muezzin is allowed to use a loudspeaker five times a day for a call to prayer must to be clearly distinguished from each other. 2 Within the framework of religious freedom, the construction of minarets is allowed in Germany. The range of protection provided by Article 4 of Germany’s Basic Law does not differentiate based on the numerical strength or social relevance of a religious association. 3 The construction of minarets therefore follows the foundational idea of equal treatment. The same principle applies to the issue of what building limitations can be placed upon churches and other religious structures. In these decisions, fair consideration must be given equally to new construction of large churches and to smaller churches.




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