News Code : 357804
Category : FORUM
Publish Date :    Saturday, May 25, 2019
Seville first purpose-built mosque in ۷۰۰ years

When word got out that Seville's Muslim community were about to lose their mosque, former Tottenham and West Ham striker Fredi Kanoute knew he had to help.

Hawzah News Agency (Seville, Spain) – In 2007, the landlord of a converted section of a building in the Ponce de Leon area of the Andalusian city was looking to sell, meaning the burgeoning Muslim community would face eviction.

"I helped the Muslim community in Seville a few years back. At the time they were looking to safeguard their place of worship. I helped them to keep their temporary mosque," recalled the former Sevilla striker.

Having conducted due diligence to establish that everything was "legit" there was a condition of anonymity which Kanoute insisted on. However, days later, the news was leaked all over the media.

Kanoute's generosity of $700,000 meant the Fundacion Mezquita de Sevilla remained a place of worship for him and other Muslims in the city.

A larger plot of land in Seville has been identified to construct a three-storey, purpose-built mosque with underground parking.

This time, Kanoute is aiming to raise £250,000 through the Kanoute 4 Seville Mosque campaign for the first purpose-built mosque in Seville in over 700 years.

 "I played there for seven years, and as a Muslim the first thing you do when you arrive in a new city is you find a place to pray," he said.

"The place I found was that mosque, that I call the temporary mosque, that is still there. I found a fantastic community that is shaped of not only immigrants - as we always picture the Muslims coming from outside. It's Spanish or second-generation converts. They're Europeans, they're from Andalusia too.

"They were born as Muslims, and there is a fantastic and beautiful mix between Moroccans, Algerians, Senegalese, Malian, and it was just like a beautiful community. That's the mosque I used to go to every Friday and every time I could go.

As donations come in from across the globe, Kanoute's ambition for a new mosque and Islamic centre open to everyone could soon be the newest structure to grace the Seville skyline.