Nissa Rebela wishes Muslims a happy Ramadan

Rue de la Lapidation, or ‘Stoning Street’

After the first night of Ramadan, Nice’s Muslim community woke up to find their street signs stickered over:  rue d’Italie now read ‘Burqa Boulevard’, rue d’Angleterre had become ‘Stoning Street’, and rue de Suisse, the site of the controversial overflowing Islamic prayer center, had become ‘Islamic Brotherhood Road’.   The culprits were the far-right group Nissa Rebela, known for their “France for the French” mobile soup kitchen… that feeds the homeless, but only if they eat pork: the serve pork-infused ‘Identitaire Soup’ to exclude any hungry Muslims or Jews.

The City immediately scraped the offending stickers off the street signs, under the watchful eye of the police, and the Mayor’s office issued a statement strongly condemning the vandalism; but the City is also fully aware of its part in inflaming the tensions.   For 11 years, rue de Suisse has been the site of a makeshift basement prayer room, which has become so crowded in recent years that the prayers often spread out to the street, bringing the quarter to a standstill and infuriating non-Muslim residents.  The owner of the building wants to sell, but 2 days before a religious association was to buy it, the City preempted the purchase, as they have the right to do, and is buying it themselves under the guise of a redevelopement project… which will not include an Islamic prayer center.

Between the tensions caused from loss of their prayer center and the new Burqa ban, the last thing we need is taunts and vandalism from the far right on Ramadan.  It may be the heat of August, but let’s hope cooler heads prevail…

Nice-Matin:  Notre-Dame rues debaptisees plainte deposee,   La salle de priere de la rue Suisse preemptee par la ville

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