Barcelona Bullfighting Ring May Become Europe’s Largest Mosque

Ashifa Kassam, Guardian (London), June 25, 2014

The site of a former bullfighting ring in Barcelona could one day house the largest mosque in Europe, members of Barcelona’s Muslim community have said after announcing they have found a backer willing to cover the €2.2bn cost of the ambitious project.

Mowafak Kanfach, of the Islamic Federation of Catalonia, said Qatar’s emir, Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad Al Thani, had expressed interest in buying La Plaza Monumental, a former bullfighting ring that has sat largely unused since hosting Catalonia’s last bullfight in 2011.

La Plaza Monumental

Since the region’s ban on bullfighting came into effect, several plans have been batted around for the imposing century-old neo-mudéjar building, including a street market, luxury flats and a green space.

Kanfach told the Spanish daily 20 Minutos that a purpose-built mosque was desperately needed for Barcelona’s large Muslim community. Current plans envision a renovation that would take five years and employ an estimated 4,000 people. Kanfach said the mosque would have a capacity of up to 40,000 worshippers under its 300-metre minaret.

The space would also house a Qur’an study centre for 300 students, an art museum and a study centre focused on Spain’s Muslim history. The mosque could become a “high-level tourist attraction”, said Kanfach, with regular exhibitions open to the public, as well as restaurants and shops. “Residents of Barcelona should be proud that Muslims want to transform the pain of bullfighting into a spiritual centre,” he said.

The emir’s offer to fund the project is a step forward but the plans are still in the initial phases, pending the sale of the bullfighting ring by the current owner and the approval of the city of Barcelona.

Kanfach said the process was likely to be boosted by the roots that Qatar already has in the city. Qatar Airways sponsors Barcelona football club, and the investment arm of the Qatari armed forces recently bought a five-star hotel in central Barcelona.

Still, the plan to build one of the world’s largest mosques blocks away from the Sagrada Família basilica has attracted criticism. On Wednesday, the leader of the People’s Party of Catalonia, Alberto Fernández Díaz, rejected the idea of a “mega-mosque”, saying it was not suitable for a city like Barcelona.

In particular, Fernández Díaz worried about undertaking a project of such magnitude with “people and countries” who may “have values that collide with our own”.

This is the second time Barcelona has flirted with the idea of turning a bullfighting ring into a mosque. In the early 2000s, the city’s then mayor, Joan Clos, studied the possibility of building a mosque in Las Arenas bullfighting ring.

Disagreements with the financial backers, based in Saudi Arabia, led the project to be cancelled. Instead, the bullfighting ring became a shopping centre.

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  • David Ashton

    Triumphalism.
    Meanwhile, Franco’s Valley of the Fallen is reportedly under threat.

    • Einsatzgrenadier

      The cosmopolitan elites are facilitating a Muslim reconquista of Spain, some 500 years after the Catholic monarchs Ferdinand and Isabella kicked the Moors and the Jews out. This is full-scale third world invasion, except the modern descendants of King Roderic and his Visigothic noblemen are simply giving Spanish territory away, instead of making the Saracens fight for every square inch!

      • David Ashton

        Apparently a Pakistani refugee who became a Christian and criticised Islam is to lose his asylum status and be deported because his opinions have upset Muslim immigrants in Spain. A perfect symbol of the de facto alliance between the Secular Left and Arab Jihad against European civilization. Come back, Pelayo, all is forgiven!

        • Alucard_the_last

          You are correct. I lived in San Fran for 10 years and the strange thing is the undying love of leftists and radical Muslims. Sexism, racism and homophobia is something only white Christians possess.

          • David Ashton

            I have just returned (noon GMT, June 26) from a visit to a local coffee shop where I read through today’s leftist “Guardian”, noting its usual self-parody letters page with signed protests, this time laboring with some casuitry over the LGBT-Muslim clash in Birmingham schools; I take five newspapers each day.

            On the way home I noticed a knot of what looked like Native Americans raising charity money with a woodwind band opposite a charity shop. I went inside and said (unlike me, actually): “It looks as though we’ve got Red Indian immigrants now. Let ’em all come – 60 million Chinese would make a good start.”
            A woman with dyed red hair snapped: “We [sic] went to their country [sic] and took all [sic] their lands away.”
            I said: “You are implying that the white race is evil and must be punished for the alleged crimes of some of its ancestors. England belongs to everyone but the English.”
            She left the shop and another woman chipped in: “If you want to know about racism, you should read ‘The Guardian’.” I said I had just done so and she replied: “Good for you.”

            Neither of these creatures were teenagers, but middle-aged women who appeared to be incorrigibly brainwashed by slanted and selective information, and a sort of impenetrable guilt.

      • IstvanIN

        I was very sad that there was no mass for King Filipe’s proclamation.

  • Adolf Verloc

    Well, I never had any use for bullfighting. But this is a worse use of the facility.

    • Pro_Whitey

      I guess as a bullfighting facility it had more than its share of bull excrement, so I guess making it a mosque is somewhat fitting.

      • Cid Campeador

        The Spaniards should start spreading pig feces around the site.
        Make it uninhabitable for the Muslimin.
        ¡ SANTIAGO Y CIERRA ESPAÑA!

        • Dave West

          Just fill the entire arena with live pigs!

        • David Ashton

          Didn’t Queen Isabella have a similar idea, that everyone was compelled by law to display a leg of pork? Or is that a myth, like the statement that the numbers killed by the Inquistion were far greater rather than far less than priests and nuns butchered by the Reds in the Spanish Civil War.

  • NoMosqueHere

    Objectors, if any, will be bought off with Saudi petrodollars.

    • David Ashton

      And there are plenty of them left after buying weapons from Israel on the cheap.

  • The problem with free market capitalism is that money trumps all. This case is an example of why nationalist parties (Nazis, the leftists call us) must rise from the ashes of WWII again. The alternative is that Europe will be lost without a shot being fired, bought and paid for by money in a capitalist system.

    • 1stworlder

      Don’t you mean bought with fiat money & debt thanks to those who shall not be named? The debt in part paid for the handouts to 3rdworld benefit seekers.

    • evilsandmich

      I’m beginning to doubt that it will ever happen myself, but when printed money dies the music will end and there’s going to be one chair and about twenty people trying to sit in it.

  • Alucard_the_last

    A site of blood is to become another site for blood.

  • AngloCelt

    Where’s El Cid when you need him?

    • Cid Campeador

      Too bad that the Generalísimo chose to reinstate the Monarchy. The King was a figurehead in a nation ruled by a liberal parliament like the UK where Muslims and Africans are becoming the majority in London..

    • Lagerstrom

      He did the job centuries ago and now look at this! No ‘new’ Cid coming along any time soon. He’s be shouted down as an islamophobic racist that probably doesn’t like ‘gays’ and jews. The Spanish authorities would bring back the death penalty to have him executed.

    • Cid Campeador

      I think he’s pissed off at me for using his title.

  • IstvanIN

    Funny how some Spaniards will protest for a republican form of government but this is ah-OK.

  • Mrfinoni

    the 1%’s are trying to force Islam on Europe the cradle of Western Christianity, the renaissance, enlightenment, the industrial revolution, democracy the scientific revolution etc..etc…etc. Why do the 1% want to destroy Western Civilisation? What is their end game? Perhaps a former insider and convert to truth might provide an answer.

  • You would think that a nation that was occupied by Islam for over 700 years would have learned something.

    • Cid Campeador

      Spain and the rest of Western Europe is committing ethnic and cultural suicide.
      We’re doing likewise in the FUNDAMENTALLY TRANSFORMED AMERICA.
      The Liberals/Progressives MADE It happen.
      Their voters WATCHED it happen.
      The rest of us asked “WHAT THE HELL HAPPENED?”

      • Well put. But as if “Liberals/Progressives” weren’t bad enough, as someone recently wrote, Western nations are being ruled by a hybrid of predatory capitalism and multicultural Marxism.

    • Lagerstrom

      If you don’t know anything, you’re most likely stupid. If you’re stupid, you’ll most likely never learn anything.

      • I think much can be explained by the sentence I paraphrased to Cid Campeador above.

  • Dave West

    1,000 foot tall minaret, that’s nothing! In the next decade libtards will erect 2,000 foot tall statues of the Kenyan in every major city in America; they will be the MLK Blvd’s of the future, alerting motorists of high crime areas of every city!

  • TXCriollo

    Wtf happened to my ancestor homeland?

    • Cid Campeador

      Pretty much what’s happening here. We are going to become a Muslim Africa.

  • dubium

    And nobody suggests that the emir of Qatar maybe should invite these arabs to HIS LAND instead and use the money to help his arab muslim homies. No, ofcourse Europe should feed them and he builds mosques for them instead. In Europe!

    Qatar takes in almost NO refugees at all, but they are rich as hell and is an arab muslim country. Hence, a perfect place for arab muslim refugees. But no, we let them use their money on fun stuff instead. They are building football arenas for hundreds of billions for example.

  • JJCULLEN

    WTF is a minaret?

    • dubium

      The tower they announce (shout, sing?) prayers or call to prayer from. Kind of something like the church bells but with a guy in it instead of bells.

  • Korean guy

    Doesn’t Spain generate a lot of tourism revenue from the building? And it is a building that contain Spain’s traditions and culture. Replacing it with a building for another purpose means Spain is destroying a very historical building.

  • jayvbellis

    I heard that some of our guys in Spain slaughter pigs to desecrate land planned for Islamic Mosques.

    Since cattle bulls once were slaughtered here, slaughter some pigs.

    • Cid Campeador

      That’s true. They did something like that I believe in Andalucía in the South.

  • evilsandmich

    An “art museum”? Curious to see what an Islamic “art museum” looks like (well, not that curious).

  • Epiminondas

    National suicide.

  • Cid Campeador

    IF that’s the case then Jews have a perfect right to be the keepers of Israel.
    Towns/Cities like Nazaret,. Bet Lehem, Yerushalaim, Elat etc, have been there for more than three millennia! What right do these Muslims have to say it’s their land.

  • jayvbellis

    White Spanish have the best won lost record in brutal race, culture wars with Muslims, Aztecs, liberation theology Amer Indians.

    Let’s face it, we White Anglos have nothing to compare with the likes of El Cid, General Franco and my favorite Chile’s Gen Pinochet!

    Russian’s current bad as$ Vladimir Putin is the only one who can compare to these immortals.