German Mosques Set for Full Operation on May 20th

Germany’s Muslim bodies agreed with authorities to go fully operational on May 20th meaning that the mosques would hold Friday, Taraweeh and Eid prayers which gather large congregation.

Mosques in Germany have been closed after the country was hit by the novel coronavirus outbreak. Authorities decided to allow a partial reopening on May 9th which allowed Muslims to individually pray at mosques in certain times. As Germany went on with further easing of measures a couple of days ago, Germany’s Muslim bodies and local authorities also announced that they agreed to go fully operational on May 20th.

Muslims all around world have been observing the Holy Month Ramadan during which a special daily prayers called Taraweeh are hold at mosques. However, German Muslims as well as Muslims in other countries have been barred from mosques as coronavirus outbreak hit the country. After being closed for several weeks, German mosques are now ready to hold all prayers by providing certain measures previously set by the bodies like DITIB and IGMG which run most of the mosques in Germany. “Those mosques which can not provide the sufficient coronavirus measures previously set better stay closed,” said Kazim Turkmen, head of Turkish İslamic Union of Diyanet, the largest Muslim body in Germany which oversees more than 900 mosques.

German government began to further ease coronavirus measures on May 9th and on Saturday even Bundesliga matches also resumed. Being skeptic about early easing of measures, German Chancellor Angela Merkel warned that if infection rate goes over 1,1 again meaning 50 new infections for each 100 thousand people, the measures then would have to be reinstated.

With the current decision, Muslims in Germany would be able to catch last three Taraweeh prayers as the Holy Month if Ramadan nears end. Taraweeh, Friday and Eid prayers traditionally gather large congregation which could cause coronavirus infections. DITIB, IGMG and other Muslim bodies, however, sent out a strict coronavirus codes to mosque associations after the initial opening which included keeping safe distance during prayers and holding record of visitors for certain time.

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