Archive for May, 2012

May 16, 2012

Plans for huge Islamic Centre in Clongriffin

Source: Irish Times

A Dublin-based Muslim group is in advanced discussions to develop a € 40 million Islamic Cultural Centre including a substantial Mosque at Clongriffin on the northern fringe of the city. A formal planning application for the six-acre campus is to be lodged with Dublin City Council by the end of this summer.

The complex is expected to give a major boost to Dublin’s newest town centre and lead to the creation of up to 500 construction jobs over a three year period.

May 4, 2012

Ireland emerging as epicenter for Islamic finance in West

Source: Irish Times

Despite the fact that Ireland still has a relatively small Muslim population – at about 50,000 according to the 2011 census – Ireland has nonetheless emerged as a major global centre for Islamic finance.

Earlier this year Taoiseach Enda Kenny said the Government was “determined to ensure that the IFSC is a centre of excellence for Islamic finance”.

About 20 per cent of all Sharia funds located outside of the Middle East are now based in Ireland, while the industry here services about €2.5 billion worth of funds. In 2010, the Government published extensive tax legislation in the Finance Act to facilitate a wide variety of Islamic finance, such as debt capital markets, securitisation and investment funds. Moreover, Ireland has double tax treaties in place with 67 countries including Turkey, Malaysia, the UAE, Bahrain and Kuwait.

More recently, it has positioned itself in the debt space, with Goldman Sachs listing a $2 billion sukuk on the Irish Stock Exchange late last year. The Sharia-compliant bond acts as a trustee and seller of “murabaha” trust certificates. Murabaha is a contract whereby the seller must disclose its profit to the buyer.

But despite the hype, Islamic finance still remains a small segment of the overall international financial services market in Ireland, given that the total funds industry is worth about €2 trillion. “It’s a reasonable number but is growing,” notes Quinn.

May 4, 2012

Irish Imam aware of radical wing

Source: Belfast Telegraph

Ibrahim Michael Noonan from Co Waterford, who is the first Irish man to become an Imam, said last night that he had become aware of a small, militant element of Islam creeping into the country and called for increased vigilance.

“I have become aware in the last year or so of a radical wing of Islam converting young Irish men who have become disenchanted with Irish society.

“I must stress that 99pc of Muslims living in Ireland have absolutely no interest in this branch of Islam but there is small element of brainwashing going on of young, disenchanted men by some extreme people who have made their way into the country,” he said.

Mr Noonan, a former theology student and staunch Catholic, contemplated becoming a priest before converting to Islam.

He is now the head of the Muslim community in Galway.

“It is unsettling to hear that there are certain people in the country who are interested in the kind of mindset of Osama bin Laden,” he said.

May 4, 2012

Al-Qaeda thinks Ireland is ready for Islam

Source: Belfast Telegraph

Osama bin Laden was urged by a fellow leading al-Qa’ida member to send a message to the Irish people to urge them to convert to Islam.

New files removed from Bin Laden’s compound reveal how Ireland was occupying the mind of top al-Qa’ida leaders.