The German town of Kaufbeuren had a referendum on plans to build a mega mosque. 59.6% of the population voted against.
The organisation that wanted to build the mosque, DITIB (Turkish-Islamic Union For Religious Affairs), is believed to be directly linked to the government of Turkish President Erdogan. The plans included a minaret of 21 meters high.
Those opposing the plans had collected 3,250 signatures – about 900 more than they needed to trigger a referendum. 27% of eligible voters participated – 20% was needed for a valid result. So all in all, the establishment is going to have a tough time ignoring this one. There is a way out for DITIB however: the plans were to build on public land, which is why the people had a say. If the organisation manages to find a private plot of land they can build anyway.
Kaufbeuren is in the south of Germany and has 43,000 inhabitants.
German townspeople standing up for their own cultural identity, standing up for feeling at home in their hometown, and voting against having their skyline dominated by an imposing structure that is representative of a culture that is diametrically opposed to theirs, left at least one social democrat in tears:
In het Beierse plaatsje Kaufbeuren gaat de bouw van een Turks-islamitische megamoskee niet door na referendum. Voorstanders nu helemaal in de war en "geschokt", zo ook deze SPD-mevrouw. Knettergek. https://t.co/VNJ7tiGWRP pic.twitter.com/BkE5tqZ6Yv
— Sietske Bergsma (@SBergsma) July 30, 2018