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Quebec : There will be no Muslim Cemetery in Saint-Apollinaire

There will be no Muslim Cemetery in Saint-Apollinaire./Ph. Kenzo Tribouillard - AFP
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In Saint-Apollinaire, the local referendum of July the 16th has failed the hopes of the Muslim community in Quebec, Canada. Among 49 citizens entitled to vote, 19 opposed the project of the funeral complex Harmonia and the Center culturel Islamique de Québec (CCIQ), while 16 supported it, says Le Journal de Québec. The participation rate was 75%.

«They have given the chance to speak to a minority and that is what is unfortunate ... We have just said to several thousand Muslims in Quebec : no, we do not want you,» commented Mohamed Kesri, Secretary of the CCIQ.

The latter promised to «continue the fight as long as the community gives us the mandate», adding that other solutions were on the table, but without wanting to detail them. Mohamed Kesri does not rule out an appeal to the Human Rights Commission.

The Mayor of Saint-Apollinaire, Bernard Ouellet, who was in favor of the project, believes that this municipality of 6,000 inhabitants carried the burden of a debate that far exceeded it. «We realize that this is not only about us, and that it is a sensitive issue throughout Quebec,» he said.

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