Historic first: Muslim call to prayer blasted in major US city over outdoor speaker 5 times a day

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In a Minneapolis neighborhood, part of controversial Rep. Ilhan Omar’s district, the Muslim call to prayer is being broadcasted five times a day over outdoor loudspeakers through the month of Ramadan. It is thought to be the first time a public call to prayer is conducted in a major U.S. city.

The call to prayer is being issued via an amplified public address system on the rooftop of the Dar Al-Hijrah Mosque in the Cedar-Riverside neighborhood. According to the Sahan Journal, the P.A. system and technical support necessary for the community-wide vocal calls were provided by First Avenue (a famous nightclub and music venue that became a national landmark of sorts after Prince used it as a location for several scenes in the movie “Purple Rain”). The city of Minneapolis issued a noise permit for the calls to prayer that start at sunrise and end at sunset.

The official rationale for the neighborhood-wide call to prayer is so that Muslims can pray together while social distancing.

“This is a historic moment tonight for us to be celebrating the first call to prayer, adhan, in a major city in the United States,” said Sheikh Abdisalam Adam, board chairman of Islamic Civic Society of America & Dar Al-Hijrah Mosque.

“Tonight’s historic call to prayer in Minneapolis will bring comfort and remind the faithful and the neighborhood that as we are physically distant we can still be connected to our faith and mosque,” said CAIR-MN Executive Director Jaylani Hussein.

Cedar-Riverside is a neighborhood that in recent years has become one of the most densely populated areas of Islamic immigrants in the country, principally coming from Somalia and Ethiopia. It was in that neighborhood that two years ago, a group of Muslims was reported to be patrolling the area, confronting people who were not following tenets of Sharia law.

Locals have for years called the area “Little Mogadishu” and it is known to have been a recruiting ground for Islamic terrorists.

Watch the video here of the first call to prayer Thursday evening and an interview with Sheikh Adam …

Video by Sahan Journal

A majority of residents in the neighborhood welcome the call to prayer, but needless to say, there are plenty of people who find the development troubling.

Ramadan is an Islamic holiday that lasts a full month during which participants practice personal reflection, prayer and fasting–from one sighting of the crescent moon to the next. It takes place during the ninth month of the Islamic calendar all over the world. Ramadan means “scorching” in Arabic.

The precedent set with this community-wide Muslim call to prayer is significant. “Some people see it as historic,” Adam told Al Jazeera. “To the point … that they’re not doing it, able to see it in their lifetime.”

“This will hopefully inspire others … to think about what could happen in future Ramadans and beyond,” CAIR’s Hussein said.

Watch and listen to the first Minneapolis call to prayer, shared by CAIR, an anti-semitic group linked to Hamas …


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