New Mosque in Granada a Reminder of 15th-Century "Al-Andalus"

December 6, 2003

Source: The Guardian,2763,1101169,00.html

On December 6, 2003 The Guardian reported, "Five hundred years after being hounded out by the Catholic monarchs Isabel and Ferdinand, Spain's Muslims have built a mosque overlooking what was once Islam's most important outpost in Europe, the Alhambra palace in Granada. The call to prayer of the muezzin can now be heard in the narrow streets and alleyways of Albaicin, the city's old Moorish district, as a new generation of Spanish converts which is growing both in numbers and in confidence gives the city back a small part of its ancient Islamic heart. 'When we stand in the garden and look out at the Alhambra, we tell people that what they see is not something built by Arabs but by the people of Granada - by their own forebears, who were Muslims and spoke Arabic,' said Malik Ruiz, a local engineer who is the president of the mosque...Yet building a mosque in this conservative provincial city has not been easy. It took 22 years to overcome objections from neighbours."