Swedish police Tuesday granted a mosque permission to hold a weekly call to prayer, triggering divisions among politicians and the public, five months ahead of elections in a country which has taken in waves of asylum seekers in recent years.
The police permit, which is valid for a year, has caused concern among some politicians that it will exacerbate cultural tensions, while others maintained a neutral stance ahead of the Sept. 9 general election.
But Sweden’s Social Democrats Prime Minister Stefan Lofven said that ending segregation goes hand in hand with tackling unemployment and making sure schools and neighborhoods have high standards.
“The entire society in Sweden is built on having different religions,” he told TT, AFP reported.
According to a poll conducted by social research company SIFO and published by the private broadcaster TV4 in March, 60 percent of respondents said they wanted to ban the call to prayer from mosques in Sweden.