EZIRE in the Media
EZIRE in den MedienPart Fourteen of the FOCUS series addresses magistrates. Rohe explains that magistrates are understood as people who settle conflicts within extended families. This title can be achieved through authority and power, also the size and reputation of the family is playing a particularly important role. However, according to Rohe, these mediators are overrated. The underlying phenomenon is called parallel justice – the attempt to keep conflicts internally and also to decide against the applicable German law, to put pressure on witnesses and victims and to protect one´s own family. At the moment, a great deal of dilettantism and sometimes also the attempt to “trample on the rule of law” can be observed, which one should not put up with. Rohe speaks of a threat to the rule of law, one must see that one can “break the scene”. But this can only be successful by creating trust in German institutions. Through education measures, Muslims must realize that in Germany the courts are better dispute mediators.
Hüseyin Çiçek on the expulsion of IS-fighters from Turkey
In the Vorarlberger Nachrichten on November 12 Hüseyin Çiçek, associated EZIRE-member and political scientist, spoke about the expulsion of foreign IS-fighters from Turkey. He views the actions of the Turkish government as a reaction to the European critique on the military operation in Syrian and as an act of political vanity.
Hüseyin Çiçek about the situation in Syria: “The big winner is Russia”
The political scientist Hüseyin Çiçek, associated EZIRE member, commented in articles in The Arab Weekly on October 26 and in the Austrian newspaper Die Presse on October 23 on the Russian-Turkish agreement in Sochi.
Northern Syria – threatened by a new conflagration? An interview with Hüseyin Çiçek
On Wednesday, 16 October 2019, political scientist Hüseyin Çiçek, together with Gudrun Harrer (Der Standard), Walter Posch (Institute for Peacebuilding and Conflict Management at the National Defence Academy Vienna) and Jörg Winter (ORF Istanbul), discussed in the Journal-Panorama of the Austrian radio station Ö1 the military operation of Turkey against the Kurdish YPG militia, which had started one week before. Here you can listen to the interview in full length.https://oe1.orf.at/player/20191016/574207 Here you can listen to the interview in full length.
Failed coup attempt in Turkey has its third anniversary – Hüseyin Çiçek in Vorarlberger Nachrichten
In an article in the Vorarlberger Nachrichten, political scientist and associated EZIRE member Hüseyin Çiçek deals with the failed attempt to overthrow Turkey by parts of the military in which more than 200 people died. The coup attempt, which took place in the night from 15 to 16 July 2016, marks its third anniversary this year – there are still raids against suspected slurry supporters. – from 16.07.2019
Study by Mathias Rohe: Parallel justice also exists in the southwest
On Monday, 15.07.2019, EZIRE Director Mathias Rohe presented his new study in Stuttgart – the result: Cases of parallel justice also undermine the rule of law in Baden-Württemberg. Although the situation is not dramatic in the southwest, there are also problems here, Rohe summed up his study. The study was reported on by Süddeutsche Zeitung, welt.de, Südkurier, Stuttgarter Nachrichten, SWR Aktuell, Schwarzwälder Bote, n-tv, t-online, swp, rtl.de as well as Pforzheimer Zeitung. – from 15.07.2019
Mathias Rohe on the deportation of clan leader Ibrahim Miri
In an article in Focus Online, EZIRE director and Islam expert Mathias Rohe talks about the nightly deportation of Ibrahim Miri to Lebanon. The clan expert praised the handling of Ibrahim Miri as a “completely correct warning shot” – from 12.07.2019
Mathias Rohe on the request of the AfD in the Bundestag to expel clan members
In an article in Focus Online, EZIRE Director and Islamic Studies scholar Mathias Rohe evaluates the proposal submitted by the AfD to the Bundestag to expel clan members. The AfD considers the massive struggle of the authorities against the criminal members of large Arab families in recent months not enough, it demanded several measures from the federal government in one application. – from 03.07.2019
Mathias Rohe in BR: The Sharia – A Brief Cultural History of Islamic Law
The term “Sharia” polarizes in Germany. Few people know what this term really means. BR radiowissen followed this topic in its podcast of 26 June – as an expert, EZIRE director Professor Dr. Mathias Rohe comes to word. – from 03.07.2019
Hüseyin Çiçek in the Vorarlberger Nachrichten: Surprisingly clear – opposition triumph in Istanbul with symbolic effect
In an article in the Vorarlberger Nachrichten, political scientist and Turkey expert Hüseyin Çiçek, an associated EZIRE member, deals with the election victory of the opposition candidate Imamoglu in the new elections in the metropolis of Istanbul and the symbolic effect associated with it: he refers to a quotation from Erdogan, who himself started his political career as Istanbul’s mayor: “Whoever wins Istanbul wins Turkey”, Erdogan used to say. Now the ruling party has lost Istanbul twice. – from 25.06.2019
Erdogan faces key challenge in Istanbul – Hüseyin Çiçek in “The Arab Weekly”
In an article by “The Arab Weekly” from 23 June 2019, political scientist and associated EZIRE-member Hüseyin Çiçek deals with the increasing challenges Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan faces. Surveys predicted the victory of the opposition in the resumed elections in Istanbul, and both economic and foreign policy problems emerged.
Hüseyin Çiçek in Neue Zürcher Zeitung: Will Erdogan remain master of the house? Turkey faces decisive days
Hüseyin Çiçek, political scientist and associate member of EZIRE, writes in a guest commentary in Neue Zürcher Zeitung on 20 June 2019 about the upcoming re-election in Istanbul and the future of Turkey.
Hüseyin Çiçek in the Tagesspiegel about Turkish-Russian arms deals – A Background
Hüseyin Çiçek, who works as a university assistant in the Alevi Theological Studies course at the University of Vienna since May 2019, but still belongs to the EZIRE as an Associate Member, writes in the Tagesspiegel about the Turkish-Russian arms deals: “The anger of the West comes too late” – from 08.06.2019.
The German constitution turns 70: Interview with Mathias Rohe in WDR ZeitZeichen
Today, on May 23rd 2019, the Federal Republic of Germany celebrates the 70th birthday of its constitution (Grundgesetz). In a 15-minute radio feature by WDR ZeitZeichen reporter Marfa Heimbach, EZIRE-director Mathias Rohe is one of the interviewees.
As a professor of law and islamic studies, he mainly talks about article 4 of the constitution, which guarantees religious freedom, about the (in-)compatibility of religious texts and the constitution, and uses its anniversary to point out that it was not self-sufficient.
“Sharia police can intimidate” – Interview with Mathias Rohe in Deutsche Welle
In an Interview with Deutsche Welle (19 May 2019), EZIRE Director Mathias Rohe talks about the new trial against the members of the so-called Sharia Police in Wuppertal. Rohe welcomes this step and at the same time warns against generalisations.
Mathias Rohe at the Conference “Strengthening the rule of law – promoting integration”
On May 9 2019, within the context of the Ruhr-Conference, the Ministry of Justice of North Rhine-Westphalia held the panel „Strengthening the rule of law – supporting integration”. Invited experts discussed how to inspire those to follow the rule of law who have so far evaded it. Also attending was EZIRE director Mathias Rohe.
Several news outlets, including the Aachener Zeitung, Focus Online,NRZ, RP Online, RTL as well as the Westdeutsche Zeitung and Westfälische Rundschau published interviews and articles with Rohe about clan criminality in NRW.
Hüseyin Çiçek: Opinion on the election setbacks of the AKP in “The Arab Weekly”
In the article “After election setbacks, Erdogan faces challenge of economic disrepair”, published April 7, 2019 in “The Arab Weekly”, Political Scientist and EZIRE reasearch assistant Hüseyin Çiçek gives his opinion on the election setbacks of the AKP.
Although Erdogan’s ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP) remained the biggest political group in Turkey, with more than 44% of the overall vote in the elections March 31, the AKP lost Istanbul, Ankara and several other cities to the opposition. Following these stinging losses, Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan must repair Turkey’s economy to fight off an emboldened opposition and to prevent fissures in his own party to widen.The results marked a serious setback for Erdogan, who has won many campaigns since the AKP moved into power more than 16 years ago. The AKP’s narrow defeat in Istanbul, where Erdogan started his political career 25 years ago, was a heavy psychological and political blow to the president, who had turned the local elections into a referendum about Turkey’s “survival.” According to Hüseyin Çiçek, Erdogan made the election, as he did in previous campaigns, about himself. “Political adversaries were demonised and presented as stooges of the ‘West’,” Çiçek said. “It worked only up to a point this time.”
Naturalisation despite polygamy: Mathias Rohe comments
In an article of the newspaper Welt that discusses a bill aiming to change the naturalisation laws, EZIRE director Mathias Rohe supplies information on how much we know about polygamous marriages in Germany and what legislation banning the practice should focus on. (06/05/2019)
The bill had passed through cabinet in early April and was now awaiting parliamentary debate, however, without a previously included ban on naturalising applicants living in a polygamous marriage. The ministry of the interior, spearheaded by Horst Seehofer, was still planning to implement the ban in another law this autumn.
The current regulations about polygamy in Germany were incomplete: even though a ban was in place, it only affected civil marriages held in Germany. It was therefore difficult to find or generate reliable information on informal polygamous marriages, according to law professor and islamic studies scholar Mathias Rohe. It was, however, safe to say that we are not just talking about isolated cases and therefore “important and legitimate to uphold our principles. We have to emphasise our objection to polygamy.” On the other hand, it was one of the challenges of a pluralistic and globalized world that polygamy was considered more normal in some cultures and the protection of individuals should be the first priority. For women in polygamous marriages it was for example crucial to be able to make a maintenance claim.
Mathias Rohe about the “modern Imam” in Deutschlandfunk
For the series “Living and thinking Islam – Ethical Questions of every-day Muslim life” EZIRE-Director Mathias Rohe comments regularly in Deutschlandfunk. The most recent post “Vorbeter und Vorbild” (Leaders of Prayer and Life) discusses the role of the Imam in Muslim communities. (26/04/2019)
According to Rohe, the Imam played a much bigger role in German public discourse than he should be and was expected to not only handle religious responsibilities but also be available as counselor and problem solver for all walks of life. “Hopelessly overstrained” imams were the results of those high expectations.
The article also inlcudes the expertise of Ahmed Shekeb Popal, an imam from Munich, and Serap Güler, state secretary for integraton in North Rhine-Westphalia. It includes discussion about the modern aspects of working as an imam, such as office hours via WhatsApp, but also about language barriers, generational conflicts, and the influence of imams in Salafist and Islamist milieus.
Mathias Rohe in the Erlanger Nachrichten: Interview about Family Clans in Berlin
In an interview with the Erlanger Nachrichten, EZIRE director Mathias Rohe discusses the actions of family clans in Berlin. He talks about the structure of clans, the question of the state´s loss of control in some areas, the state’s handling with clans and the role of women in clans. (08/04/2019)
Çiçek in The Arab Weekly about the Turkish elections
The English language periodical The Arab Weekly quotes EZIRE research assistant Hüseyin Çiçek in a comprehensive report about the recent municipal elections. (07/04/2019)
Aside from Çiçek, a number of other international experts on Turkish politics and international affairs were questioned for the report. The economic situation especially is emphasized as a reason for the losses of the AKP. Yet, Çiçek also mentions the Negative Campaigning by Erdoğan, wich “worked only up to a point this time”.
Hüseyin Çiçek comments on the Turkish municipal elections
The political scientist explains last weekend’s events for the newspaper Vorarlberger Nachrichten: a “political mess”. (03/04/2019)
Even though Erdoğans AKP lost their rule over the ten biggest Turkish cities, Çiçek says a policy change, though possible, was not guaranteed. What remains of the populist election campaign that used post-colonial and anti-West rhetorics – especially instrumentalising the terrorist attack in New Zealand – are political shambles. The vote of the Turkish people can not only be read as a defeat of the governing party, but also of the political narrative that has been groomed since the failed putsch in 2016 and places that night into a “long chain of historical events, the West had deliberately staged to weaken Turkey.”
Political disarmament and a road to the ideological middle might be possible reactions to the elections, Çiçek concludes.
Guest Commentary by Hüseyin Çiçek for NZZ
The guest commentary “With or without Asad? – The Turkish-Russian alliance is built on shaky ground” by Hüseyin Çiçek explains the geopolitical situation of the conflict in Syria. (07/03/2019)
Of the three major external protagonists of the Syrian Conflict, Moscow, Ankara and Washington, the latter wanted to, as promised during the election campaign, retreat more or less completely from the region. Technically, the other two could profit from the move, EZIRE researcher and political scientist Hüseyin Çiçek writes, but the geopolitical interests were too different for a Turkish-Russian alliance to prosper.
Competition for Erdoğans AKP
The article “Ex-president Abdullah Gül said to found new party” in the newspaper Tagesspiegel EZIRE research assistant Hüseyin Çiçek comments on the current developments in Turkey and the chances of the new party. (25/02/2019)
A return to reform policy and the end of the one-man-system of Erdoğans, those were the party’s promises lead by the former companion of the Turkish president. The AKP could now have a serious competitor and lose many voters to the new center-right party because of the poor economic situation and growing resentments toward the government. Hüseyin Çiçek also thinks that the party could stand a good chance: the “overturn of democracy” and “nepotism in Ankara” had pushed away many voters, as he is quoted in the Tagesspiegel. Whether or not the party could actually herald a new political era in Turkey, was dependent on the credibility and expertise of the challengers, so the article concludes. Click here for further information about this topic.
„The parallel world of Arabic Clans“
The article „Geld, Gewalt und Größenwahn“ [money, menace, and megalomania] in the Mannheimer Morgen examines, with reference to EZIRE director Mathias Rohe, the development of clan criminality in Germany. (15.02.2019)
Since the beginning of the year, public debate and the need for action concerning the fight against clan criminality have increased. The symposium „360° – actions against clan criminality“ by the ministry of the interior of North Rhine-Westphalia at the end of January, stresses this observation. The article in the Mannheimer Morgen offers insights into the incidents of the last few years, court proceedings, scientific observations, but also everyday life of the clans.
Mathias Rohe at the event “Peace Responsibility in Islam”
EZIRE Director Mathias Rohe was invited to speak at the event “Peace Responsibility in Islam” on 19 November – a joint event of the Rhineland Palatinate Government and the Central Council of Muslims in Germany, taking place at the Landesmuseum Mainz. The program can be found here, the website Islam.de summarized the event (21.11.18).
Regarding the currently heated social mood – discussions about Islam often revolve around issues of radicalization and violence, closing the view on the “normal” life of most Muslims among us, putting them under general suspicion and making them responsible for criminal offenses in the name of their religion – the event was intended to contribute in particular to the objectification of the current discourse on Islam. Mathias Rohe had a conversation with Prof. Dr. med. Ahmad Milad Karimi, deputy director of the Center for Islamic Theology at the Westfälische Wilhelms-Universität Münster, about “Peace Responsibility in Islam”. The symposium was received with strong interest, which was visible in the large number of participants and the lively discussion.
Mathias Rohe at the „Table of Religions“
The EZIRE-director was invited to speak at the „Table of Religions“ during the Intercultural and Interreligious Weeks in Pfaffenhofen. The regional newspaper Pfaffenhofener Kurier has summarised the event and Rohes performance. (15.11.2018)
The talk given by the scholar of islamic studies and law had discussed the relation between a constitutional state and religious communities and had been met by an interested audience. Rohe, passionate and entertaining – so described by the newspaper -, had taken stock of different areas of cooperation between religions, of room for improvements concerning the recognition of Islam as an equal religion, of the “rough” and in parts “vicious” discoursive climate which an engaged civil society should meet with determined resistance.
Podcast with Hüseyin Çiçek: Parts 1 and 2
As part of the series “Turkish Vorarlberg, EZIRE research associate Hüseyin Çiçek, who is spearheading the series as co-author, sat down for some background conversation. Part 1 of the Podcast reveals some background information about the series, the immigration history of Vorarlberg and everyday life. Part 2 offers insight into the roots of so-called parallel society and ventures forth into a discussion about the political situation in Turkey. (11 & 12/10/2018)
In the first part of the podcast, the political scientist reflects on the first few weeks of the series: The emotional and exaggerated responses were a clear indicator that more information about the topic was necessary and the series even more relevant. He ends on different dynamics of the Turkish working life and the big topic of institutional representation of the Turkish community on a regional and national level.
Part 2 starts out with a bold hypothesis by VN-editor in chief Gerold Riedmann: “We live in a spotless parallel society, don’t we Hüseyin? Çiçek differentiates the claim at first by talking about the many aspects of life where points of contact do exist. It was true, however, that – amplified by digital and social media – different news were consumed, and that they were available in a “better, faster and more filtered context.” The end of the talk is dominated by the challenges created by the current political climate in Turkey and how they affect the Turkish community in Vorarlberg as well as Austrian and German politics.
Integration brings conflicts
Dr. Hüseyin Çiçek in an Interview with the Vorarlberger Nachrichten about discussions as an expression of successful participation in society. (09/10/2018)
A huge part of the Turkish society in Vorarlberg is already well integrated and participates in society, but integration does not mean living in harmony with one another. In principle, clubs play an important role in all immigrant groups, serving as a piece of home and offering the opportunity to meet with like-minded people. Turkish clubs, taking over various social and political tasks, can be reffered to as the mouthpiece of certain parts of the Turkish immigration society. Members of the clubs take part in different integration platforms, both in municipalities and at the state level. In addition to their own advocacy they also try to mediate between club members and politicians of the majority society. A currently discussed topic in the community, for example, is dual citizenship. Some say that Turks would not be accepted in Austria, no matter what they do, while others try to smooth the waves. The debates about integration had become more emotional as the immigration society became more visible – large parts participated in the society. This positive change raised issues that were not on the agenda a few years ago. It used to be thought that integration leads to harmony, but successful integration leads to a tension and to a controversial discussion of certain developments. If newly founded Turkish parties would move within the constitution and the social order and represented the interests of the people living in Austria, this is part of successful integration, according to Çiçek. Participation in society could be strengthened by the promotion of language, which does not only create harmony – if you educate people to emancipation, they represent their opinion. One must endure these tensions as one must fight extremely right positions within the majority society: they also can´t simply be sent away. In order to deal with extreme positions, one must be vigilant with whom one acts publicly and who one invites into an integration advisory board. In order to do that, one has to be familiar with the immigration society and speak the language.
Murder of Berlin Clan-Member
Mathias Rohe about possible motives, the state of affairs and history of the Berlin clans, and consequences and lessons for the German Rule of Law in an interview with n-tv.de. (10/09/2018)
The EZIRE legal expert and Islamic scholar assesses the act as possibly a revenge plot or part of a territorial dispute. It was, however, difficult to see through all the background and inner workings of the clans.He emphasizes that Berlin was not the only place and clans not the only solicitors of these crime – biker gangs, for example were structured similarly. But the authorities were handling the situation accordingly. A recently passed law had proven quite useful in this case – a clear sign for progress. In general, the criminal clan activities had to be met with all the force of the law. And they could be prevented from spreading by offering good living perspectives for arriving refugees, helping them not to slip into the clan-environment. This was how the existing clan structures were built in the 1970s and 1980s.
More murder cases were unlikely, though. The clans as well had no interest in more deaths.
Mathias Rohe comments: Sarrazin’s new book is “fear-mongering”
In the week of its release, the director of the EZIRE weighs in on “Feindliche Übernahme – Wie der Islam den Fortschritt behindert und die Gesellschaft bedroht” (Hostile Takeover – How Islam prevents progress and threatens society), the new book by Thilo Sarrazin. The interview with the German Press Association (dpa) is now being quoted in several publication, such asnordbayern.de. (30/08/2018)
The islamic studies and legal scholar emphasizes that Sarrazins main thesis and book title were unsupported. There were, for example, broad studies which – contrary to Sarrazins claims – confirmed that immigrants changed their attitudes and were indeed engaged with German society. Rohe also critites the connections Sarrazin was drawing between questionable behaviour and religion, as this was more related to cultural influences. Also highly disputable was Sarrazin’s Qu’ran interpretation, which, as Rohe states, had similarities to that of ISIS-terrorists and made him – phrased sharply and not unironically – a “fantastic candidate for the curatorship of the Salafist organisation.
The criticism was mutual: Sarrazin was accusing Rohe of obscuring and trivializing the problems of German Islam. The professor of islamic studies, however, considered the book as the usual “dilettantism”.
Immigration Society in Vorarlberg – Part 1: History
With the article „Turkish Life in Vorarlberg – How the Turkish Immigration Society developed in the federal state” a new series of correspondence was announced between EZIRE associate Dr. Hüseyin Çiçek and the Vorarlberger Nachrichten. (28/08/2018)
The series aims to bring more attention to different aspects of the Turkish community in the Austrian federal state. Many things were unknown and little differentiation had been practiced when reporting about the Turkish diaspora living in Austria. A defecit, which the VN and the EZIRE research associate wanted to catch up on.
Part one focuses on the history of Turkish immigration, which had begun in the 1950s, according to Çiçek. He explains how Islam had found its way into politics and with migrants of the 1960s to Austria and Germany. Towards the end of the 1970s a “islamic-nationalist identity” had formed and solidified, in connection to the Iranian Revolution and the beginning of the war in Afghanistan. By way of Turkish teachings, newspapers, Turkish organisations and by now social networks, these identities also had an influence on the Turkish diaspora living in Vorarlberg.
Çiçek comments: Turkey out of kilter
Fot the Austrian publication the Standard, research associate Dr. Hüseyin Çiçek comments in “Turkey out of Kilter” on the complicated developments that lead to the present disputes beetween Ankara and Washington. (21/08/2018)
For the political scientist it is clear that the crisis could not simply be traced back to the incarceration of US-pastor Brunson. For quite some time, there had been critical voices from the West regarding Erdoğans policies, which were now increasing and getting more serious, Çiçek argues. There was, however, no sudden end of the alliance, which keeps Turkey connected to the US and EU-States, NATO, in sight. But, Turkey was finding itself in an increasingly off-kilter position. The higher US-tariffs could be seen as a sign for Ankara that they were looking at more and more reactions to the “political excesses”.
Moreover, Çiçek identifies three developments that are relevant to this story. Firstly the different approch und support of the Syria Crisis; secondly, Erdoğan’s proximity to Russia that resulted from it; and thirdly, the manifestation of the Turkish change of course in the Afrin-Offensive. In addition, in the aftermath of the failed putsch, foreign investors had been alienated. Çiçek subsumes that despite the uncalled for media attention of the Brunson case, the geo-political interests of both states were at the heart of the argument.
New sanctions in the air
In an article with the Vorarlberger Nachrichten EZIRE research associate Dr. Hüseyin Çiçek offers his expert insights regarding the dispute between Turkey and the USA as well as the weak position of the Turkish Lira. (17/08/2018)
Çiçek emphasizes that the value drop of the Lira was less caused by the imprisonment of American pastor Brunson – this was more constructed by the media – but that the failed putsch and Erdoğans “personalized autocracy” had alienated investors. Furthermore, the political scientiest and Turkey expert explains that the tension between Turkey and the US were not likely to be relieved anytime soon as Turkey would expect the extradition of Gülen as a quid pro quo for releasing Brunson. Still, aside from the economic provocation there was no reason to believe that the NATO-partners were in for a serious split; the common political and military interest, for example with regard to Syria or Iran, were too signicant.
From a weak democracy to a personalized autocracy
In the article “From weak democracy to personalized autocracy” for Austrian newspaper Der Standard, political scientist and EZIRE-employee Dr. Hüseyin Çiçek comments on the political power of Turkish President Erdoğan and the question of whether this will try to unite the ultra-right parties MHP and Iyi Parti (06/07/2018).
The challenges of the Turkish political system with democracy are by no means new, but it is necessary to illuminate what President Erdoğan has achieved, so that the current developments are not classified as system weaknesses of a second-degree democracy. In the Present, the Turkish president unites all power and holds state-subsidized offices, which he exercises without restriction. Çiçek explains that Erdoğan’s political power differs from that of his predecessors as he, more than anyone else, can make the political or social balance within society dependent on his personal worldviews. In the upcoming months will be interesting whether Erdoğan makes an attempt to unite the two ultra-right parties MHP and Iyi Parti, which has split off from the former. Their political views with regard to minorities, human rights and democracy differed little from each other, the votes of both parties taken together account for 20 percent for the ultra right. The economic challenges would only partially restrain Erdoğan in his personalized political, autocratic agenda, but he could now realize his idea of domination by even more arbitrary, puzzling or threatening action and distract from real political abyss.
Fact Checking Islam: Magistrates
In the Focus-series, Mathias Rohe talks about the magistrates (09/07/2018).
Rohe explains that magistrates are understood as people who settle conflicts within extended families. This title can be achieved through authority and power, also the size and reputation of the family is playing a particularly important role. However, according to Rohe, these mediators are overrated. The underlying phenomenon is called parallel justice – the attempt to keep conflicts internally and also to decide against the applicable German law, to put pressure on witnesses and victims and to protect one´s own family. At the moment, a great deal of dilettantism and sometimes also the attempt to “trample on the rule of law” can be observed, which one should not put up with. Rohe speaks of a threat to the rule of law, one must see that one can “break the scene”. But this can only be successful by creating trust in German institutions. Through education measures, Muslims must realize that in Germany the courts are better dispute mediators.
Even more Power for Erdogan.
The political scientist and EZIRE employee Hüseyin Çiçek comments on the election victory of the Turkish leader Recep Tayyip Erdogan in the article “Noch mehr Macht für Erdogan” in the Vorarlberger Nachrichten (26/06/2018).
It should not be forgotten that Erdogan, similar to the referendum on the introduction of the presidential system, did not achieve an overwhelming majority, political scientist Hüseyin Çiçek points out. In addition, there were numerous obstacles for the opposition and the socially conservative strategy of the president and his party appears to fully work out. With regard to the presidential system, Çiçek emphasizes that Erdogan has been the most powerful man in Turkey since Atatürk. Çiçek connects the popularity Erdogan found among the Turks in Austria with his public attacks against Chancellor Sebastian Kurz, like when Kurz announced mosque closures: “Erdogan and Kurz have almost passed the ball to each other”.
Fact Checking Islam: Can Muslim Boys not be told?
In the Focus series, Mathias Rohe comments on the prejudice that Muslim students question the authority of their teachers (26/06/2018).
This behavior has less to do with the origin than with the education of children, Rohe says. The culture and the patriarchal education, not the religion, are largely to blame for the “macho attitude”. Not infrequently, it is precisely the mothers who teach their sons to defend themselves and the family, but of course such education is not always the case.
Implementing the Austrian Islam Law would help Erdogan.
The article „Aktion nützt Erdogan“ in the Vorarlberger Nachrichten by political scholar and EZIRE research associate Dr. Hüseyin Çiçek connects the possible implementation of the Austria Islam Law and Turkey’s upcoming elections (09/06/2018).
Erdogan, the AKP und its ally, the MHP, ought to profit from the implementation of the Law, as it would serve as a concrete back-up for their consistent claim, Anti-Islamic sentiments in Europe were rising. The action would therefore strengthen the platform of both, the Turkish and the Austrian government. Çiçek closes with a critical thought: „If one does not like imams to be sponsored by Turkey, one ought to train them in Austria.“ And this is where Austria is far behind where it should be.
For more on the topic: Mathis Rohe criticizes the Austrian Islam Law (in German).
Fact Checking Islam: Is Islam an aggressive Religion?
In the Focus-series, Mathias Rohe talks about the preconceptions about Islam as an aggressive religion. (05/06/2018).
According to Rohe, Islam is generally “safe” because of the many harmless Muslims who are a normal part of society. Nevertheless, there are extremist attitudes and interpretations that can indeed be very dangerous, as several attacks in Germany have already shown. But next to this danger “in Islam”, there also is the possibility to actually create the dangers you want to avoid by a blanket suspicion of all Muslims and pure “hatred of Islam”. One has to be careful because by trying to divide Muslims out of society, one can reinforce the extremists.
Fact Checking Islam: Do all Muslims fast during Ramadan?
In the Focus-series, Mathias Rohe explains the fasting month of Ramadan and its importance and unimportance to Muslims (31/05/2018).
Fasting is a “sign of a certain outward religiosity” and a social event that invites and attracts others, so many people take this religious duty seriously. But there are also many Muslims who break with Ramadan – if only for professional reasons. In a non-Muslim society, fasting is not that easy, but in Islamic-dominated countries it would be a bit calmer in the month of fasting. As far as alcohol consumption is concerned, according to Rohe, there are both, Muslims who do not drink alcohol at all and those who would not see it as strictly.
Fact Checking Islam: Is Islam an intolerant Religion?
In the Focus-series, Mathias Rohe clarifies the many half-truths and preconceptions about the headscarf and Islam (07/05/2018).
Rohe explains why Islam is not an intolerant religion. One must distinguish the human and the theological level. Even though Islam, like other world religions, sees itself as the “region of truth”, there is a basic attitude of respect for other faiths. A task to manage is the handling of non-religious people, atheists or people who want to turn away from religion – in this area, there is still a high level of intolerance. But that is more a question of education than a set principle.
Fact Checking Islam: Does the Koran dictate Muslim women a headscarf?
In the Focus-series, Mathias Rohe clarifies the many half-truths and preconceptions about the headscarf and Islam (30/04/2018).
Essentially, there were only few and vage suras in the Koran that were concerned with the dress code of Muslims, Rohe emphasizes. One ought to dress “modest and decent”, however, this could be applied to both men and women. Another sura did say, women were to keep their heads covered. This tradition, however, did not have its roots in Islam, but was custom in many cultures for ‘honorable’ women. This was the most important realization about the issue.
Fact Checking Islam: Radicalization in German Mosques?
In another part of the series ‚Fact Checking Islam‘ with Focus Online, Mathias Rohe deconstructs the prejudices about the radicalization in German mosques (24/04/2018).
The islamic studies professor emphasizes that there was no reliable data about radicalization in German mosques: „There are many claims yet little knowledge with these things”. More problematic than the few cases, in which radical concepts are being disseminated in mosques, however, were the “backyard circles“ as they are difficult to identify as such.
What the War in Syria has to do with the Popularity of the AKP
Comment by Hüseyin Çiçek in the newspaper Der Standard (24/04/2018)
The disagreements of Russia and the US with regard to the future of Syrian dictator Assad left domestic and foreign political margins to Turkey, political scientist Hüseyin Çiçek argues. Regarding foreign policies, Turkey was now able to actively take actions against Kurdish organizations on Syrian territory. This also paced the way for domestic political advantages, since the AKP hoped to gain popularity by taking actions against Kurds regarding the early elections Erdogan set for June 2018.
Increasing Pressure on Islamic-Turkish ATIB Association
For the newspaper Vorarlberger Nachrichten, Hüseyin Çiçek interprets the war-glorifying plays in ATIB associations in Vienna (19/04/2018)
For Hüseyin Çiçek, Turkey belongs to the group of nation states which identified themselves with the help of victory in military disputes. The battle of Gallipolli, e. g., Çiçek explains, had been displayed by Turkish theaters ever since. War-glorifying plays with the aim of identity constitution were a challenge for democratic politics, especially when, as in the present case, children were involved. To dissolve ATIB was nevertheless the wrong approach, Çiçek claims.
Erdogan Strives for New Elections in June
Interview with Hüseyin Çiçek in the newspaper Vorarlberger Nachrichten on the Turkish election plans (19/04/2018)
For the Vorarlberger Nachrichten, political scientist Çiçek analyzes the announcement of Turkish president Erdogan to antedate elections in Turkey by one and a half years. Erdogan preferred the new election date because he currently enjoyed great backing by the Turkish people, Çiçek claims. This backing was, among other factors, due to the successful Turkish military intervention in Afrin and the Turkish positioning in the Syria conflict. Furthermore, the Turkish opposition was massively weakened.
Dialogue instead of Jihad
For the newspaper MainPost Regional, Mathias Rohe informs about the Ahmadiyya communities in Germany (06/04/2018)
According to Mathias Rohe, director of EZIRE, the German Ahmadiyya communities were characterized by liberal values, especially in matters of faith. This liberal attitude could be explained by the prosecution the Ahmadiyyas often faced due to their believes in their countries of origin. The relationship between the sexes was nevertheless coined strictly paternalistic.
Learning in the Mosque
At the webpage of the broadcasting station Bayerischer Rundfunk, Mathias Rohe comments Islamic education in schools and mosques in Germany (05/04/2018)
Lawyer and Islamic scholar Rohe is in favor of Islamic education in public schools as an addition to private Islamic education in mosques. He believes that publicly funded Islamic education enables young Muslims to discuss religious matters of faith without fear and to develop their own points of view.
Ankara, Washington and their Geo-Politics
In the Austrian newspaper Der Standard, Hüseyin Çiçek analyzes the intertwined foreign politics of Washington und Ankara (27/03/2018)
Political scientist Çiçek explains, that Turkeys aggressive foreign politics and domestic repressions are met with incomprehension in the US. However, Washingtons as well as Brussels silence with regard to Turkish military operation in Afrin, which is considered illegal under international law, clearly showed that the West intended to keep on tolerating the Turkish policies due to its own, geo-strategical interests.
Fact Checking Islam: Does Islam belong to Germany?
In a new installment of the Focus Series Mathias Rohe provides statistics for the debate that was again brought to the table by the minister of the interior (21.03.2018)
Mathias Rohe explains that the migration story of many German Muslimis lead back to Turkey or the Balkan States and that a majority lived in industrial metropolitan areas – a remnant of the guest-worker period. The number of Muslims with German citizenship was rising and occuring problems with integration were rooted in migration, not the religion of people.
Fact Checking Islam: Does the Sharia override the constitution?
Mathias Rohe comments on the compatibility of the Sharia and the German constitution for the Focus Series “Fact Checking Islam“
The Islamic Studies scholar clarifies that the constitution and the Sharia were entirely different types of texts. The Sharia instilled Islamic values that were absolutely compatible with the constitution. It even called for Muslims to respect the laws of non-Muslim countries. Extremist, who interpreted the Sharia as the only text of law, ought to be monitored, of course. In summation, however, “there is no inevitable contradiction” between the Sharia and the German constitution.
Tensions are easing between Turkey and Austria
In the Voralberger Nachrichten, Hüseyin Çiçek comments on the Turkey-Austria relationship (09/03/2018)
Çiçek identifies Austria‘s strategy in handling Turkey: While chancellor Kurz was acting all tough and neglected a Turkish EU-membership, Austrian foreign minister Kneissl was more differentiated.
Fact Checking Islam: Bloody Sharia Law?
For the Focus Series “Fact Checking Islam“, Mathias Rohe comments on violence in Islamic jurisprudence (05/03/2018)
Mathias Rohe states that Sharia law couldn’t just be judged as a “bloody law” – simply because “Sharia” did not refer to a singular law. And even though violence legitimating thought existed in Islamic law, as the jurisprudence of the so-called Islamic state, which recurred to Sharia law, showed, these interpretations were rejected by the large majority of Muslims.
Fact Checking Islam: Islamization of the West?
In the second part of the Focus series, Mathias Rohe explains and contextualizes accusations of an Islamization of the West (13/02/2018)
For Mathias Rohe, it is obvious that any claims that Muslims intended to “Islamize” the West by higher birth rates were unfair and could not be taken seriously”, especially since studies clearly showed that the birth rates of Muslim migrants adapted to those of their environments after only a few generations.
Headscarf between Normality and Jurisdiction
For BR24, Mathias Rohe comments on the topic headscarfs in schools (05/02/2018)
In 2003, the German Federal Constitutional Court allowed the German Federal States to establish pre-emptive headscarf prohibitions. In 2015, the verdict was widely revised. Quite rightly, Mathias Rohe argues: “We have gathered a lot of insights since 2003 and can calmly claim that female teachers with head scarfs do not cause problems as a rule”.
Fact Checking Islam: Killing of Infidels?
In the new fact checking series by the newspaper Focus, Mathias Rohe elaborates on the killing of infidels in Islam (30/01/2018)
For Focus, Mathias Rohe is commenting on the widespread belief that the Quran invoked the killing of infidels. The Islamic scholar makes clarifies that most Muslims interpreted the killing of infidels as described by the Quran historically by connecting them to military disputes with pagan Meccans.
The situation is getting worse daily
In the Voralberger Nachrichten ,Hüseyin Çiçek comments on the tense relationships between Brussels, Washington and Ankara (12/01/2018)
Political Scientist Hüseyin Çiçek discusses the current tensions between Turkey and the US, which became especially apparent due to the different interests of both countries in the Syria conflict. Meanwhile, the relationship between Ankara and the EU became just as bad.
Sharia-Police-Verdict: A Positive Signal
In an interview with the broadcasting station Deutsche Welle, Mathias Rohe comments on the verdict of the Federal Supreme Court (11/1/2018)
For Mathias Rohe, the verdict of the Federal Supreme Court, which ruled that public presence with reflective vests stating “Sharia police” are prosecutable, was a positive signal. If someone tried to pressure with the means of Islamic extremism, this first and foremost affected Muslims.
Religion as a Catalyst for Violence?
Mathias Rohe debates the violent potential of religions in the Nürnberger Nachrichten (20/12/2017)
In a debate with Islamic scholar Tarek Badawia and the regional bishop of Nürnberg, Mathias Rohe discusses the violent potentials of Christendom and Islam. For him, religions are not a source of violence, per se, for several worldviews also held violence-supporting views.
DITIB: Becoming Marginalized?
In the Aachener Nachrichten, Jörn Thielmann comments on the allegations against DITIB in Germany (26/11/2017)
To limit the influence of the Turkish Directorate General for Religious Affairs, the DITIB statute needed to be changed, says EZIRE executive director Jörn Thielmann. High Turkish officials had far-reaching authorities.
Met with Obstacles: the Kurdish Referendum in Iraq
In the Neue Zürcher Zeitung, Hüseyin Çiçek comments on the Kurdish Referendum in Iraq (06/10/2017)
Since the beginning of the Arab Spring it has become clear that the borders in the Middle East are about to be redrawn. This also holds true for the Kurds in Iraq, whose fight for independence is about power and resources.
“Don’t belittle the problems”
In the Tagesschau, Mathias Rohe comments on an EU study on the current situation of Muslims in Europe (21/09/2017)
Mathias Rohe finds the results of a new EU study on the current situation of Muslims in Europe little surprising. Like other research on the topic, the study conducts that most Muslims were “well connected” to their new home countries. Meanwhile, they still had to fight discrimination on the housing and job market.
Why Sharia Law can also Benefit Women
Mathias Rohe speaks to the broadcasting station Deutsche Welle about the need to focus on individual cases when dealing with Sharia Law (15/09/2017)
Mathias Rohe, director of the research center EZIRE, understands the concerns to recognize Sharia Law which many people might have. Nevertheless, he opts for a jurisdiction focusing on individual cases: “If the result of structural disadvantage can be an advantage for a woman in a specific case, we want to give her this advantage. Not if it’s the other way around, of course.”
“Doubts about the Effects”
Interview with Mathias Rohe in the newspaper Allgemeine Zeitung on child marriage in Germany (17/08/2017)
Mathias Rohe highlights the symbolic worth of the new legal announcements against child marriages in Germany. However, the law still required some adjustments.
Polygamy: When one Woman is not Enough
In the newspaper Das Parlament, Mathias Rohe elaborates on polygamy in the course of the refugee crisis (07/08/2017)
Even though polygamy is forbidden in Germany, it yet exists. Lawyer and Islamic Scholar Mathias Rohe assumes that the number of polygamy marriages has grown in the course of the refugee crisis. For many, the legal prohibition did not count. In the milieus typical for polygamy, the marriage was still considered valid.
Simplification of the Asylum Procedure via Conversion?
In the newspaper Hohenzollerische Zeitung, Jörn Thielmann discusses the Christian conversion of Muslim refugees (07/08/2017)
Islamic Scholar and executive director of the EZIRE, Jörn Thielmann, states: “The interest in baptismal services is growing”. Some Muslims wanted to distance themselves from the cruelties committed in the name of Islam. However, only few of them hoped for advantages in the asylum procedure. Whoever converted committed social suicide, Thielmann states.
Turkey and the Qatar-Crisis: Balancing between Riad, Doha and Teheran
Guest commentary by Hüseyin Çiçek in the Neue Zürcher Zeitung on Turkey’s reaction to the crisis in Qatar (14/07/2017)
In the Neue Zürcher Zeitung, Hüseyin Çiçek describes Turkey’s handling of the Qatar-crisis. According to Çiçek, Ankara feared a military riot in Qatar. This is why Turkey has explicitly announced its solidarity to small golf state – and thereby causing trouble to Saudi Arabia.
First Results: Salafists Are Good Social Workers
The broadcasting station Bayerischer Rundfunk reports about the EZIRE research study “Islam in Bavaria” (13/07/2017)
For two years, Dr. Mahmoud Jaraba, scientific researcher at the EZIRE, has incognito investigated the Bavarian Salafism scene. He found out that the radicals tend to focus on muslim teenagers, born in Germany, as well refugees. Mathias Rohe, director of the EZIRE and lead researcher of the study, puts the local mosques into duty: They were unable to adress the teenagers and could not bind them religiously.
Islamic Welfare – “Where you sent by God?”
In an interview with the broadcaster Deutschlandfunk, Mathias Rohe speaks about the impact of Islamic welfare (28/06/2017)
Mathias Rohe makes clear that Islamic welfare in Germany is necessary. However, as the lawyer and Islamic scholar states, its implementation was rather difficult: Money and a representative Islamic cooperation partner were missing. Furthermore, explicit contracts were needed to make sure that no extremist got the chance to pray Islamist content in German prisons.
Sharia and Basic Law
Video of Mathias Rohes talk “Religious-cultural dispute settlements and Parallel Justice” during this years FFGI-Conference “Sharia and Basic Law” (08/06/2017)
Islamic Norms and German Law
With recourse to different works of Mathias Rohe, the broadcaster Deutsche Welle writes about Islamic child marriages in Germany (06/06/2017)
According to Mathias Rohe, religious child marriage is one of the points were Islamic family law and German basic law differ the most. However, he also points out similarities: For both legal systems, marriage was to be treated in terms of civil law.
Getting Tougher with Criminal Clans?
In conversation with the broadcaster WDR, Mathias Rohe elaborates on structures of criminal clans in German cities (02/06/2017)
When speaking of criminal clans in Germany, Mathias Rohe mainly thinks about the Mhallamiye Families that have migrated from Lebanon about 30 years ago. Even though it would be exaggerated to state that full city quarters were under their control, it could not be denied that they were “very present in some streets”.
The Prisoners’ Dilemma
On Carnegie Endowment for International Peace, Mahmoud Jaraba and Lihi Ben Shitrit analyze the current Palestinian hunger strike (25/05/2017)
As Mahmoud Jaraba and Lihi Ben Shitrit point out in their article, the Palestinian hunger strike campaign is exposing intra-Palestinian divides, particularly within Fatah.
Sharia Law and Basic Law
The broadcaster Deutsche Welle reports on a FFGI-conference with Mathias Rohe (13/5/2017)
A conference hosted by the Frankfurt Research Center on Global Islam (FFGI) has examined areas of tension between Sharia Law and German Basic Law. As one of the speakers, Mathias Rohe states: “With Sharia Law, you can either trample around human rights or you can justify those rights”.
Over 1000 Gülen Followers arrested in Turkey
Statement in the Liechtensteiner Volksblatt by Hüseyin Çiçek on arrests in Turkey (27/04/2017)
Hüseyin Çiçek is not surprised by the current wave of arrests in Turkey. For him, it is obvious that the cutting back of basic civil rights in Turkey will continue.
Heading for Confrontation
Guest commentary by Hüseyin Çiçek in the Neue Zürcher Zeitung on the referendum in Turkey (19/04/2017)
Hüseyin Çiçek describes how the triangulate organizational network of the Turkish AKP enables the party to stage Turkish domestic politics in other countries.
New Wave of Arrests in Turkey
Interview by Radio Liechtenstein with Hüseyin Çiçek on the referendum in Turkey (19/04/2017)
Political Scientist Hüseyin Çiçek expects the Turkish president Erdogan to use the prolonged state of emergency in Turkey for further waves of arrests.
on jetzt.de , Dunja Ramadan comments on Constantin Schreibers “Inside Islam” and quotes remarks made by Mathias Rohe (08/04/2017)
In his publication, Schreibers writes about presumed propaganda of a Turkish-Shia Imam against Yazidis. Mathias Rohe assumes a mistranslation which might have massive consequences.
All is Mine
Article from the newspaper taz on the planned constitutional reform in Turkey (31/03/2017)
Based on the overview from the research unit for Turkish law at the FAU, the newspaper taz informs about the planned changes of the constitution in the course of the Turkish referendum.
Politicization of Religion from top down
Article by Hüseyin Çiçek in the Austrian newspaper die Furche (30/03/2017)
Hüseyin Çiçek describes how Turkish Laicism, the state-controlled administration of Sunni Islam, benefits the Turkish president Erdogan and his party, the AKP.
Many Debates on a piece of fabric
Report from the newspaper Freie Presse of a public debate with Mathias Rohe on headscarfs in Germany (30/03/2017)
The discussion under the slogan: ‘A textile matter of faith? Everything we always wanted to know about headscarfs and veils’ in the city of Chemnitz provoked many queries in the audience. Mathias Rohe was arguing against the fear of the ‘Islamisation of Germany’: It was unlikely that Muslims would ever form the majority of German society. Furthermore, one should not perceive Muslims in Germany as a uniform block.
Along the red line
Mathias Rohe talks to Deutschlandradio Kultur about mosques in Germany (27/03/2017)
Mathias Rohe comments on the book “Inside Islam” by the journalist Constantin Schreiber. Schreibers intentions were praiseworthy, says Rohe. However, there was no general “problem of mosques” in Germany – even though there was a problem with some mosques.
Stagnation instead of Cooperation – Institutionalized Islam in Germany
In a report from Deutschlandfunk, Mathias Rohe speaks about the institutionalization of Islam (23/03/2017)
Why is it so hard for Islam in Germany to become an organized denomination – like the church? Mathias Rohe says: “A structure has to be established and this leads to some trouble.” In the case of islamic pastoral care and community welfare, money was missing – and thus security.
“No Room for an Electoral Campaign”
Interview with Hüseyin Çiçek in the Nürnberger Zeitung on the planned constitutional reform in Turkey (16/03/2017)
Hüseyin Çiçek talks to the Nürnberger Zeitung about the electoral campaign of Turkish politicians in Germany. To him, it’s clear: “This situation is highly emotional”.
“To Sense Diversity”
The newspaper Badische Neueste Nachrichten recalls on Mathias Rohes speech during the Karlsruhe Weeks against Racism (15/03/2017)
Islamic Scholar and Lawyer Mathias Rohe talks about the historic presence of Muslims in Europe and Germany, dispels prejudices and calls for solidarity and unity to challenge islamist extreminism and Islamophobia.
Turkey: What Will Change in Case of an Constitutional Reform
In the Badische Zeitung, Ali Yarayan explains the planned constitutional reform in Turkey (11/03/2017)
The research unit for Turkish Law at the University of Erlangen-Nürnberg has translated all planned changes from Turkish to German and marked all passages that will change in case of a constitutional reform in Turkey. “Our aim was to provide an objective foundation for substantial debates”, says Ali Yarayan, executive head of the research unit as well as scientific researcher at EZIRE.
“Die Ruhe in Ägypten ist eine Friedhofsruhe”
Statement by Mathias Rohe on Angela Merkel’s visit to Egypt, Merkur.de (28/02/2017)
Chancellor Merkel visits Egypt’s president Al-Sisi. On the agenda are a possible cooperation in refugee politics as well as the support of Egypt’s Al-Azhar University to instruct German Imams. Mathias Rohe remains skeptical: Just as DITIB in Turkey, the Al-Azhar University was “closely connected with the Egyptian regime”.
Turkish Nationalism then and now
FAU aktuell interviews Hüseyin I. Çiçek on nationalist movements in Turkey (03/02/2017)
Given the current background of many challenges such as the war in Syria, the PKK, Jihadi terrorism and political tensions between Ankara and the NATO, nationalist discourse seems to experience a revival in Turkey. Hüseyin I. Çiçek talks about the reasons and historic parallels.
Entry Ban for Muslims
Mathias Rohe talks about the effects of the entry ban for Muslims in the topic talk of the day, Bayern 2 (30/01/2017)
In debate with anchorwomen Stephanie Heinzeller, Mathias Rohe talks about the effects of the U.S. entry ban for Muslims from seven states. He clearly states: “The effects are disastrous.” Nevertheless, Rohe has trust in the American constitutional state: “The system of Checks & Balances will work”.
Objectifying the Debate on Islam
Review of Mathias Rohe’s publication: Der Islam in Deutschland. Eine Bestandsaufnahme, FAZ (23/01/2017)
Wolfang Günther Lerch reviews Mathias Rohe’s latest book and finds that it is an important contribution to the at times heated debate on Islam in Germany. Lerch states that Rohe’s work is mindful of the capabilities of the German Basic Law as well as of the needs of the constitutional state while also showing an understanding of religious needs.
Swimming Instruction without Exception
Interview with Mathias Rohe about the European Court’s judgement, ZDF, Forum am Freitag (20/01/2017)
The European Court judged: Children of conservative Muslims also have to participate at educational swimming instruction. “Forum”-moderator Abdul-Ahmad Rashid asks about the effects of the judgement on Germany.
Interview with Mathias Rohe about the topics of the year, Deutschlandfunk (27/12/2016)
That has only to do with Islam, that has nothing to do with Islam – these are the knee-jerk reactions to everything which is discussed between attack and forced marriage in public. Mathias Rohe looks back on the topics of the year.
Well, state, where do you stand in terms of religion?
Discussion with Mathias Rohe about the relation between society and faith, Bayern 2 (06/12/2016)
The religious communities in Germany lose members year after year, simultaneously, faith and religion ensure fierce discussions. Good reasons to speak about the relation between society and faith. Religion sociologist Monika Wahlrab-Sahr and Mathias Rohe also discuss the balance between positive and negative religious freedom.
Limits of Muslim Pastoral Care
Interview with Mathias Rohe about the current state of Islamic pastoral care in prisons, BR24 (23/11/2016)
The Islamic pastoral care in prisons is still in its very early stages, said Islam scientist Mathias Rohe. How can the situation be improved from his point of view?
What to do with 20.000 Qurans?
Mathias Rohe speaks about the proper handling of confiscated Qurans, Deutschlandradio Kultur (21/11/2016)
Mathias Rohe strongly advices against burning the Qurans that have been secured during the closure of the Salafist group “Die wahre Religion”. He favours to store the books somewhere safe and to “abandon them to their fate”.
Prohibition of the Salafist group “Die Wahre Religion”
Statement by Mathias Rohe on the prohibition of the group “Die Wahre Religion”, Süddeutsche Zeitung (15/11/2016)
Islamic scholar and lawyer Mathias Rohe appreciates the prohibition of the Salafist group. But he also warns: “(…) they will find other platforms”.
About DITIB and planned mosques
Lecture by Jörn Thielmann on “Islam in Bad Kreuznach – wie kann ein friedliches Zusammenleben gestaltet werden?”, Allgemeine Zeitung (23/11/2016)
Jörn Thielmann spoke i.a. about the importance of sermons, DITIB and gridlocked discussions about mosques, and helped to objectify the debate on the new construction of the mosque near Bosenheim.
Religion and Society
Lecture by Mathias Rohe on “Islam in secular Europe”, ARD-alpha (12/11/2016)
Can Islam be a part of Europe? Professor Mathias Rohe concentrated on this society and policy relevant question (April 13, 2016). He focuses in his lecture on the chances and challenges arising for the European states as well as for the Muslims in Europe.
A series of events of the Bavarian Academy of Sciences and Humanities deal with the topic “Systems of inspiration in conflict”. Renowned scientists from different disciplines question the tensions between religion and secular knowledge systems and look for potential solutions for modern societies.
A Culture of Authoritarianism
A guest commentary by Hüseyin Çiçek in the newspaper Neue Zürcher Zeitung on authoritarianism in Turkey (08/11/2016)
In a guest commentary in the NZZ, Hüseyin Çiçek states that the current approach of the AKP and Erdogan is no exception and explains the long tradition of authoritarianism in Turkey. He further explains how the AKP managed to catch voters from various backgrounds through a combination of Turkish nationalism, Islamism and liberal economic policies.
“Islam in Germany”
Podcast about Mathias Rohe’s new publication, Deutschlandradio Kultur (29/10/2016)
An interview with Mathias Rohe about the contents in his new monograph “Islam in Germany. A Stocktaking” and a book review by Thilo Guschas in the programme “Lesart”. Mathias Rohe evaluates the state of research and statistical discoveries about the German Muslim community. With his nonfiction, he offers a rewarding read – full of sober facts.
Discussion about integration
A discussion in the series of “Was werden wir werden?”, Sparte 4, SR 2 with Jörn Thielmann (13/10/2016)
A discussion between the Islam researcher Dr. Jörn Thielmann and the Germanist Dr. Johannes Birgfeld about law, religion and the freedom of Islam. First of all, Tilla Fuchs spoke with Thielmann about historically coined concepts of societal cohabitation with Muslims and Christians.
Topic: Ten Years Deutsche Islam Konferenz (German Islam Conference) in Berlin
Panel discussion with Mathias Rohe on “Muslims in Germany – German Muslims”, Phoenix (27/09/2016)
Thomas de Maizière (CDU), Ayman Mazyek (Central Council for Muslims in Germany, ZMD), Publicist Sineb el-Masrar and Mathias Rohe, Director of the Erlangen Centre for Islam and Law in Europe, discuss on the podium.
“The millions of Islam-experts become a country plague”
An interview with Mathias Rohe, RP-Online (26/09/2016)
Mathias Rohe about an objective debate on Islam, discussions about the burka-ban, Ditib and terrorism.
“There are more factors uniting than dividing us”
Mathias Rohe about a “relevant occupation with Islam in Germany”, his new publication “Islam in Germany. A Stocktaking” and about the illusions and fears in the debates about Islam.
“We overestimate the power of law”
Mathias Rohe under discussion with Dietmar Hipp and Cordula Meyer, Spiegel (10/09/2016)
What is the biggest problem in the integration? The free coexistence of the sexes, Mathias Rohe says in the interview. Some Muslims did believe that “A European woman is an easy woman.”
Child marriages mostly in patriarchal structured cultures
An interview with Mathias Rohe by Catherine Simon on Qantara.de (09/09/2016)
Almost 1.500 married children and youths are registered in Germany. About 360 of them are younger than 14. Mathias Rohe illustrates the backgrounds.
Almost 1.500 child marriages in Germany
An interview with Mathias Rohe by Kevin Schubert, heute.de (09/09/2016)
At least 1.475 children in Germany are married. This is substantiated by the latest statistics, communicated by the Federal Ministry of the Interior. The legal expert Mathias Rohe talks about a “dramatic phenomenon” and a figure “that we have to take very seriously”, warns, however, of generalizations.
Struggle of power between the Islamist fractions
Hüseyin I. Çiçek’s guest commentary on the current instability in Turkey, on the attempted military coup and the deep mistrust in Turkish politics, Neue Zürcher Zeitung (27/08/2016)
The attempted military coup and Erdogan’s extensive repressive measures as a reaction show: The society in Turkey is separated, the political landscape is marked by mistrust and hate.
This is why Erdogan has so many adherents in Germany
An interview with Hüseyin I. Çiçek on the enthusiasm of many Turkish-Germans for Erdogan and Ankara’s influence on DITIB, the Turkish umbrella organisation of mosques in Germany, Nürnberger Zeitung (12/08/2016)
With which country the majority of Turkish-Germans identify the most? And is DITIB, the Turkish umbrella organisation of mosques in Germany, the spokesman for Ankara?
“Cause for religious renewal”
Jörn Thielmann in the Neueste Badische Nachrichten on the arrival of refugees in Germany and the chances for the Christian communities (06/08/2016)
Muslim communities are growing, Christian communities are shrinking. But: This can be a cause for religious renewal, argues Jörn Thielmann. A moving within the Christian communities in Germany…
„A dangerous, democratically risky course“
An interview with Hüseyin I. Çiçek on the current situation in Turkey after the attempted military coup, at #meineFAU (01/08/2016)
If Turkey is on the way to an Islamic theocracy and how the Turkish colleagues handle the situation, Hüseyin I. Çiçek explaines in the interview.
“We need counter-worlds against the radicals”
An interview with Mathias Rohe at BR 24 (27/07/2016)
Terror in the name of Islam? Which breeding ground Islam provides for extremism?
“Der IS-Propagandaabteilung glaube ich kein Wort”
Mathias Rohe at Frankenschau Aktuell (27/07/2016)
He explains how the terror militia “Islamic State” recruit its young talents – and how can the radicalization of the supporters can be prevented.
Murders in the name of the IS – Why is the Islam so susceptible to Extremism?
Mathias Rohe at the “Tagesgespräch” of Bayern 2 (27/07/2016)
In the discussion with the callers, Mathias Rohe adresses the following questions: Is violence in the name of the religion in particular a problem of the Islam? And if so, why is the Islam so susceptible to extremism?
Democracy and sacrifice: Why the events in Turkey are a matter of concern
Hüseyin I. Çiçek about the coup attempt in Turkey and the resulting events (20/07/2016)
In his blog contribution on Fokus-Nahost, Hüseyin I. Çiçek writes about the Turkish conception of statehood, nationalist tendencies in Turkey, the Fethullah-Gülen-Movement and the imbalanced relation between democracy and sacrifice.
By Muslim immigration: a chance for Christian churches
Jörn Thielmann in the christliches Medienmagazin “Pro” (20/07/2016)
The number of Muslims in Germany is growing with the refugees. The Muslim immigration can also be a cause for a religious renewal of the Christian churches.
Radicalization of youth
Bavarian Broadcasting (BR) in an interview with Mathias Rohe after the attack near Würzburg, Frankenschau Aktuell (19/07/2016)
The so-called Islamic State claimed responsibility for the attack – but how credible is it? And does the Islamic State have access to youth in Germany? Mathias Rohe finds explanations for radicalization tendencies of young people in Germany: the interaction of social group dynamics, charismatic preachers, Internet propaganda and usually difficult life situations of these young people.
Why from the Middle East? Migration to Germany at the beginning of the 21st century
Recording of the lecture by Jörn Thielmann (15/07/2016)
People of the Near and Middle East came to Europe since the end of the 19th century, seeking for education, work or protection from political persecution. Their number was particularly growing because of the labour migration of the 1960s when Turks, but also Moroccans and Tunisians were recruited intentionally. But in the last years and decades, people are fleeing from the Middle East because of (political) repression and civil wars, but also because of despair. The lecture by Jörn Thielmann aims to trace the causes of migration and the hopeful dreams.
Legal grey zone: child marriages of refugees
Mathias Rohe in BR about child marriages and the associated challenges for policy and judiciary (26/06/2016)
In Germany, it is permitted to marry at the age of 18 – in exceptional cases also at the age of 16. But what happens if underage girls married abroad? This is the problem policy and judiciary are facing currently.
How do Muslims live in Bavaria?
A radio feature of BR on the first results of the research project “Islam in Bavaria” (13/06/2016)
After the attacks on the French satire magazine “Charlie Hebdo” in January 2015, the Bavarian ministry of education and cultural affairs initiated a research project that observes the reality of life of Bavarian Muslims. Until 2018, EZIRE does research on how Muslims are integrated in Bavaria and aims at identifying possible difficulties.
Europe has to cope with the tensions
Interview with Hüseyin I. Çiçek in ORF1 on the issue of social tensions in Europe (06/06/2016)
Last but not least, the refugee crisis shows that also the religion plays a role in the integration of arriving people, as well as their traditional and cultural background. Political observers don’t perceive it first and foremost as obstacles, but also chances for a successful integration. Hüseyin I. Çiçek, associate member of EZIRE, argues for a balance between naivety and mistrust.
For a differentiated reasoning
Article about Mathias Rohe’s lecture “Islam in Germany. Conflicts and Solutions” in Forchheim, Nordbayerische Nachrichten (02/06/2016)
Mathias Rohe about a thinking in terms of black and white, ethics in Islam, cultural reasons of violence, a patriarchal social order and about the recruitment of young people in prison by Salafists.
Fire accelerant or conciliator?
Interview with Hüseyin I. Çiçek by Markus Andorf about the dialogue between the religions, integration and the potential for reconciliation of the religion in conflicts, Die Furche (25/05/2016)
Turkey: The Return of the Military
Blog article by Hüseyin I. Çiçek via Fokus-Nahost (19/03/2016)
Effects of the wave of refugees – a resurgence of parallel societies?
Interview with Mahmoud Jaraba by Roswitha Kern about Shariah-courts, parallel societies and their roots, veko online (Feb. 2016)
“The concept of Shariah-courts is misinterpreted by German media and the public debate. […] Two-year fieldwork shows that on the one hand, religious player are only a fraction of the relevant players within the Muslim community, and on the other hand, religion is just a slight motivation basis for parallel legal systems…”
Combatants from abroad in the Syrian war
Interview with Hüseyin I. Çiçek by Carsten Bergmann (RND/Madsack Mediengruppe), Leipziger Volkszeitung (29/01/2016)
Hüseyin I. Çiçek about the role of YPG in the fight against the Islamic State, the relevance of foreign soldiers in its rows and about Syria’s future.
Do we need more research about salafism? And, if so, what kind of research?
Blog article by Riem Spielhaus, sicherheitspolitik-blog (21/01/2016)
Religious right and the secular state
Lecture by Mathias Rohe within the framework of the Jewish-Islamic Forum of the Academy of the Jewish Museum Berlin with subsequent discussion with Ronen Reichman, Professor for Talmud, Codices and Rabbinic Literature at the Hochschule für Jüdische Studien in Heidelberg, and Yasemin Shooman, head of the academy programs, lecture series “Judentum & Islam in der Diaspora” (19/01/2016)
Source: Jüdisches Museum Berlin onyoutube
Judge without Law: Islamic Parallel Justice in Germany
Karin Schirner, BR, about the study “Parallel Justice” by Mathias Rohe and Mahmoud Jaraba (14/01/2016)
After the events in Cologne: “Nicht Flüchtlinge verantwortlich machen”
Interview with Mathias Rohe, Nürnberger Zeitung (07/01/2016)
Family clans: “Gibt Viertel, da zucken die Menschen bei bestimmten Namen zusammen”
Interview with Mathias Rohe, Focus Online (05/01/2016)
Interview with Hüseyin I. Çiçek “Der Terror: Ist Europa zu schwach?”
Interview with Hüseyin I. Çiçek, Kronen Zeitung s’Magazin, p. 4-5 (22/11/2015).
Jurapol interview with Mathias Rohe
Interview with Mathias Rohe about his book “Das islamische Recht” (The Islamic Law) and the opinions on Islam (19/11/2015)
Source: Jurapol on youtube
Interview with Hüseyin I. Çiçek on the attacks in Paris
Islamismus in der Türkei. Necmettin Erbakans Erben sind am Ziel
Guest commentary by Hüseyin I. Çiçek in the Neue Zürcher Zeitung (05/11/2015)
“Das lange 19. Jahrhundert” – ein Zeitalter der Extreme: Der Genozid an den Armeniern im Schatten des Berliner Abkommens 1878
Publication by Hüseyin I. Çiçek in Fokus-Nahost (02/11/2015)
Das Ende der türkischen Demokratie oder die Wiedererstarkung des Militärs in der Türkei
Commentary by Hüseyin I. Çiçek in Fokus-Nahost (22/09/2015)
Ankaras Albtraum einer kurdischen Zone
Guest commentary by Hüseyin I. Çiçek in the Neue Zürcher Zeitung (28/08/2015)
“Die rechtliche Anerkennung ist ein wichtiges Signal”
Interview with Riem Spielhaus via Mediendienst Integration about Islam-reports in Germany (26/05/2015)
Der Islam im deutschen Rechtsstaat
Lecture by Prof. Dr. Mathias Rohe on 27th April 2015
Source: video portal of the Friedrich-Alexander-Universität Erlangen-Nürnberg
“Du gehörst mir oder der Erde” – ein Widerspruch:
Publication by Meltem Kulaçatan via Fokus-Nahost (19/03/2015)
Kopftuchverbot (headscarf ban)
Interview with Mathias Rohe in BR 2 (14/03/2015)
“Nach den Anschlägen von Paris: Was denken Sie über den Islam?”
Mathias Rohe under discussion with mit Stephanie Heinzeller, Tagesgespräch, Bayern 2 and ARD alpha (12/01/2015)
AKPs Geo- und Gesellschaftspolitik
Publication by Hüseyin I. Çiçek via Fokus-Nahost (26/12/2014)
“Der Islam gehört zu Deutschland”
A comment by Riem Spielhaus via Mediendienst Integration (08/08/2014)
Religionen im Gespräch – Scharia. Eine Gefahr für das deutsche Recht?
Broadcast published by Evangelischen Kirchenfunk Niedersachsen (03/07/2014) on Youtube.
Wolfgang Reinbold in an interview with Prof. Dr. Mathias Rohe and Dr. Ibrahim Salama, religious scientist of the Universität Osnabrück.
Will the Palestinian Unity Government Survive?
Publication by Mahmoud Jaraba in Sada (02/07/2014)
The new Palestinian unity government was sworn in on June 2, 2014, promising to end seven years of violent dispute between Fatah and Hamas and between the West Bank and the Gaza Strip. The mild optimism that the agreement on the unity government generated, however, has been short-lived.
Die verpasste Chance einer Politik des Ausgleichs. Gastkommentar zum ISIS
Publication by Hüseyin I. Çiçek, in: Neue Zürcher Zeitung (27/06/2014)
Wahlmöglichkeit in der Türkei von unschätzbarem Wert
A comment by Meltem Kulaçatan via FAU aktuell (23/05/2014)
The discussion about the visit of the Turkish prime minister Erdoğan in Cologne on 24th May: What is the importance of his visit for the Turkish citizens in Germany?
The Egyptian Military’s Economic Channels of Influence
Publication by Mahmoud Jaraba via Middle East Institute (12/05/2014)
Egypt’s new constitution grants the country’s generals greater autonomy and an increased formal political role.
No cultural or religious “rebates” in German courts
Interview with Mathias Rohe via Qantara (22/04/2014)
On 24 March 2014, a court in Wiesbaden sentenced a 23-year-old German of Afghan origin to life in prison for the murder of his pregnant ex-girlfriend. In their ruling, the judges made reference to the cultural background of the accused. Eren Güvercin spoke to legal scholar and expert on Islamic law Prof Mathias Rohe about this controversial case.
Fatah in the Shadow of the Abbas-Dahlan Conflict
Publication by Mahmoud Jaraba in Sada (22/04/2014)
The escalating dispute between Mahmoud Abbas and Mohammad Dahlan divides and weakens Fatah, and it complicates the issue of internal succession.
Thielmann: Egypt’s constitution supports religious freedom
Interview with Jörn Thielmann via Deutsche Welle (18/01/2014)
Egyptians approved a new constitution in a referendum. The new constitution supports freedom of religion – at least for some minority groups, according to Egypt and Islam expert Jörn Thielmann.
Der verpasste Sommer
Publication by Meltem Kulaçatan via Fokus-Nahost (05/01/2014)
For more then two weeks now, Turkey is being jarred by a corruption scandal that touches the inmost circles of government. In the course of the crisis, three ministers have resigned from their jobs. At the same time, the turkish Prime Minister replaced the majority of his cabinet and staffed the vacancies with politicians standing close to him.
Ein ›heißer Krieg‹ im Kalten Krieg: Saudi-Arabien und der Bürgerkrieg in Syrien
Publication by Jens Kutscher via Fokus-Nahost (04/11/2013)
In Syria, Saudi-Arabia and Iran are also fighting a proxy war. Ever since the Islamic Revolution in 1979, both states are fighting in a cold war and compete in the fight for regional hegemony in the area of the Arabic – or maybe Persian – gulf.
Die Türkei im außenpolitischen Spannungsfeld zwischen westlichen Militärbündnissen und dem Nahen Osten
Publication by Meltem Kulaçatan via Fokus-Nahost (25/10/2013)
The second article of our special „civil war in Syria“ deals with the role of Turkey. As a direct neighbor, Turkey is directly affected of the results of the Syrian civil war.
Mission Impossible? Islamische Zentren zwischen Politik, Religion und Wissenschaft
Publication by Riem Spielhaus via Sagwas.net (21/10/2013)
Expectations on the Islamic Centers in German Universities, financially supported by the German Government, are high. With lightning speed, they are to establish a new degree program, produce teachers for the new Islamic religion classes in schools that have not even developed curricula and on top of that are to train “good” imams for German mosques which in the best case should also deal with the integration of Muslims and the handling of “troublemaking” teens.
Muslime in Deutschland: Zu Fremden gemacht
Interview with Riem Spielhaus and Meltem Kulaçatan via Mediendienst Integration (03/10/2013)
Almost half of the Muslims living in Germany are German. Nevertheless, the state, politics and sciences equal them with immigrants and foreigners. This can be seen in the established procedure of the authorities calling for every Muslim association to register in the register of associations for foreigners.
Selbstdefinition in der Statistik: Wer bezeichnet sich als Muslim?
Publication by Riem Spielhaus via Mediendienst Integration (25/09/2013)
How many Muslims live in Germany? The new population census raises many questions. Just 1,9 percent of the population describe themselves as Muslims. What does this say about the self-definition as a Muslim?
“Islamisches Recht und säkulare Gesellschaft – Ist die Trennung von Staat und Kirche mit den Prinzipien des Islam vereinbar?”
Lecture by Prof. Dr. Mathias Rohe about “Islamic Law and the secular society – Is the separation of State and Church compatible with the principles of Islam?” (07/06/2013)
Source: Friedrich-Naumann-Stiftung onYoutube, published on 21th June 2013.
Verfassungsrechtliche Entwicklungen in der Arabischen Welt
Lecture by Prof. Dr. Mathias Rohe on 28th November 2012
Source: video portal of the Friedrich-Alexander-Universität Erlangen-Nürnberg
“Wissenschaftler sollten gewarnt sein”
Interview with Riem Spielhaus, Tageszeitung (09/03/2012)
Riem Spielhaus about the misuse of “Muslim-Studies” by politics
“Demokratie aus dem Islam heraus begründen”
Interview with Mathias Rohe, L.I.S.A. (21/12/2011)
There is general happiness about the Arab revolutions, but again and again scepticism. What comes after? Which political groups and parties will lead these countries in the future?
A Western Misconception
A commentary by Mathias Rohe via Qantara (03/12/2011)
There is general happiness about the Arab revolutions, but again and again scepticism. What comes after? Which political groups and parties will lead these countries in the future?
“Demokratie mit Scharia ist möglich”
Interview with Mathias Rohe, Deutschlandradio (25/10/2011)
Scharia ist nicht gleich Scharia: Moderne und mittelalterliche Interpretationen seien möglich, sagt Mathias Rohe, Experte für Islam und Recht in Europa. “Wenn man heute Reformen durchführen will in der islamischen Welt und nicht nur die Hauptstadteliten mitnehmen (…), dann muss man innerhalb der Scharia argumentieren”, erklärt er.
Islam-Debatte: Das ist Rechtskulturrelativismus
A comment by Mathias Rohe in the Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung (22/02/2011)
Geheimkommando Scharia-Import? Die Legende vom heimlichen Umbau des Rechtssystems gehört zu den Erfindungen der Islamkritik. Der Jurist und Islamwissenschaftler Mathias Rohe antwortet auf Necla Kelek.
Muslimische Haltungen zum säkularen Rechtsstaat
Lecture by Prof. Dr. Mathias Rohe on 8th February 2011
Source: video portal of the Friedrich-Alexander-Universität Erlangen-Nürnberg
“Zwang wird nicht geduldet”
Interview with Mathias Rohe, Zeit online (06/05/2010)
Der Jurist Mathias Rohe über das belgische Burkaverbot und westliche Kopftuchpolitik.
“Der Islam muss keine Kirche werden“
Interview with Mathias Rohe, Tagesspiegel (25/07/2009)
Mathias Rohe about the success of the German Islam conference and the missed opportunities in the headscarf debate.
“Angekommen in Mitte der Gesellschaft”
Interview with Mathias Rohe in the Frankfurter Rundschau (27/10/2008)
Islamicist Mathias Rohe about Ottoman architecture, the interpretation of the sharia and religious identities.
“The Idea of Plural Jurisdiction Is Highly Problematic”
Interview with Mathias Rohe via Qantara (05/03/2008)
The Archbishop of Canterbury has caused quite a stir with his suggestion to integrate the Sharia into a European legal context. In fact, the Sharia is already being applied in several Western countries. Loay Mudhoon spoke with the legal and Sharia expert, Mathias Rohe, about the cases in which it does or does not make sense.