In Germany, Turkish Muslims Hope for Muslim Majority

Soeren Kern, Jewish Press, August 27, 2012

Nearly half of all Turks living in Germany say they hope there will be more Muslims than Christians in Germany in the future, according to a new survey of Turkish-German mores and attitudes.

The study also shows that Islam is becoming an increasingly important component of the value structure of Turks in Germany, especially among the younger generation of Turkish-Germans, who hold religious views more radical than their elders’ views are.

The findings have filled many Germans with a sense of foreboding and are certain to contribute to the ongoing debate (herehere and here) about Muslim integration (or, rather, lack of it) in Germany.

The 103-page study, “German-Turkish Life and Values“ (abridged version in German here), was jointly produced by the Berlin-based INFO polling institute and the Antalya, Turkey-based Liljeberg research firm, and was released to the public on August 17, as a follow-up to similar studies conducted in 2009 and 2010. It aims to determine just how satisfied the estimated 2.7 million Turks living in Germany are with their life there.

Of those Turks surveyed, 27% were born in Germany (77% of 15- to 29-year-olds were born in Germany) and 39% have lived in Germany for at least 30 years. Only 15% of Turks, however, consider Germany to be their home—compared to 21% in 2009, and 18% in 2010.

The survey also shows that labor migration is no longer the main reason why Turks immigrate to Germany; only one in five respondents said they had gone to Germany to look for work. Rather, the most important reason Turks gave for immigrating to Germany was to marry a partner who lived there. More than half of the Turkish women interviewed said they moved to Germany for that reason.

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In the area of hypothetical voting patterns, the vast majority (80%) of Turks surveyed say they would vote for leftwing or far-leftwing parties if they were able to vote in Germany. {snip}

Almost all Turks surveyed (95%) said it is absolutely necessary for them to preserve their Turkish identity; in a sign indicating that efforts at integration have a long way to go, 62% said they would rather be around Turks than around Germans (in the 2010 survey, it was 40%). Only 39% of Turks said that Germans were trustworthy.

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Of those Turks surveyed, 72% believe that Islam is the only true religion (in the 2010 survey, it was 69%); 18% say Jews are inferior people and 10% say Christians are inferior.

Arguably the most sobering finding of the study is that 46% of Turks say they hope that Germany will one day have more Muslims than Christians (in the 2010 survey, it was 33%). More than half of Turks (55%) believe that Germany should build more mosques.

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