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Israeli Attacks on Gaza Stirred Up More Interest in Islam in Spain: Muslim Leader

In Spain, Israel’s attacks on Gaza stirred up more interest in Islam and the conflict in the Middle East, according to a local Muslim leader

Umar del Pozo, head of the Association of Islamic Community in Spain and of the Granada Mosque Foundation, told Anadolu that the Palestinian issue raised questions in people’s minds.

“Maybe Europeans started seeing the truth for the first time,” he said, adding that every week the mosque in the southern Andalusia region sees one or two new converts to Islam.

The Palestinian issue also sowed sympathy toward Muslims among those who already knew something about Islam, del Pozo also noted.

“They see the Israeli attacks and lies. As a result, they start asking more questions in their minds and of the people around them,” he said.

Palestinians’ will to go back to their homes and their fight adds a spiritual aspect to that questioning, del Pozo added.

“This is how people discover Islam,” he explained, adding that the attendance in Granada of pro-Palestinian protests was high.

“We explain what’s happening in Palestine to our Christian neighbors too. They ask questions and try to learn more about Islam during the protests. I can say that (Islam) got more attention. This isn’t only in Granada, all of Europe is raising its voice on this issue,” del Pozo said.

Converting to Islam

Nahuel Calderon, 26, said he learned more about Islam from his girlfriend and recently converted.

“I can say that I found more inner peace, and live a better life now,” he said.

Granada has a community of almost 37,000 Muslims, including 4,000 Spaniards who converted to Islam and their third-generation children.

Spain counts almost 3 million Muslims originating from Morocco, Pakistan, Bangladesh, Senegal, and Algeria. They mostly live in Catalonia, Valencia, Andalusia, and Madrid.

Source : aa