The German-Islam conference, last held in 2006, was a step made by the German government to better communicate with the Muslim community in Germany, giving them a platform to speak about their problems about poverty, integration, unemployment, poor academic performance of Muslim children and more. However, the German Interior Minister Thomas de Maiziere has decided that in 2010, the group Council of Islam would be banned from the conference due to their strong ties with the fundamentalist Milli Gorus movement. This has brought concern among the three other major Muslims invited to the conference, who are trying to work with the Council of Islam to work out a collective response to the Interior Ministry’s ban.
This move by the German Interior Ministry has once again brought into light the problem of how much does Germany want their Muslim population to integrate into German society. Many critics have said that the forum does not represent a majority of Muslims living in Germany, and that it doesn’t address issues such as xenophobia. This act of openly denying a Muslim group at a German-Islam conference is certainly going to stir up conflict within the minority Muslim population and once again bring in the question of whether or not Germany is actually accepting of the Muslim population into perspective.