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Boutaris Allows Muslim Call to Prayer

225px-Yiannis_Boutaris_DrasiIt was a little after 4 in the morning on August 9, when the psalm by the young imam from Xanthi, Greece, was heard from Yeni Mosque in Thessaloniki, inviting all Muslims living or visiting as tourists the city to participate in the Morning Prayer for Ramadan’s closing.
Yeni Mosque, constructed in the year 1902, is the work of the Italian architect Vitaliano Poselli for the city’s Donmeh community. From 1925 until 1963, Yeni Mosque housed the old Archaeological Museum of Thessaloniki and since then it has served as an exhibition center.
The Yeni Mosque has become a place for prayer again, after 90 years of serving as a museum and an exhibition center. For the second successive year, Yeni Mosque was offered by the Municipality of Thessaloniki to carry out the ceremonial duties of Muslims, on the occasion of Ramadan’s celebration.
“Keeping our promise, we offered Yeni Mosque for the prayer’s celebration for the Ramadan’s fasting end. Our aim is to facilitate both the Muslim residents of the city and the Muslim visitors, who decided to celebrate the ending of Ramadan’s fasting in Thessaloniki and the wider area, honoring in that way the big feast of Islam,” Thessaloniki Mayor Yiannis Boutaris stated.
Boutaris attributed the poor attendance of pilgrims at the Morning Prayer in Yeni Mosque to the “insufficient information from the Muslim communities’ side” and repeated that “the facilitation of the exercise of the religious duties of the Muslim residents and visitors during the big feasts of Islam is a firm position of ours.”

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