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Germany

Islamic Da Vinci Code: Is Christian Symbolism Hidden In Cologne’s New Mosque?

The architect of Cologne’s not-quite-completed new mosque has been fired, accused among other things of having hidden Christian symbolism in various places in the new structure. At the very least, we have the first Da Vinci Code conspiracy plot with a mod

Ates after the opening of the new mosque
The Cologne Cathedral draws faitfhul from all over the world
ZDF
Lucas Wiegelmann

COLOGNE – Christianity's waning relevance in modern Europe is well documented. But even as church pews remain empty, there is an odd twist unfolding in Cologne, a city rich in Catholic history, where a new mosque is being built amidst the whiff of an ancient conspiracy theory.

The details are these. The architect of a near-completed mosque was fired by his client, the Turkish Islamic association DITIB. One of the reasons given was that he had hidden Christian symbols in the building – little crosses, for example, or "Chi-Rho" (XP), the Greek monogram for Christ.

And what was the first reaction of the local press? It sided with the architect. As the supposed symbols couldn't be found on the plans, the accusations were deemed groundless and any suggestion of conspiracy brushed aside.

But let's take another look at those plans. Look at the way the prayer room faces East, officially of course because that's where Mecca is – but isn't Jerusalem and the Tomb of Christ there too? And how about that cupola, doesn't it sort of resemble two stylized fish? Fish – secret symbols of the first Christians. If DITIB sees it that way, some say, the whole building may have to come down and construction begin anew.

And who could blame the Christians, really, if this really is some kind of conspiracy? After all, Cologne's famous gothic cathedral represents a major success story for secret Muslim societies. It contains relics of the Three Kings, who after all were from the East, and all those representations of Mary, who happens to be one of the main female figures in the Koran. Is history repeating itself? Just like some fear will happen with the mosque, construction on the cathedral was halted because of the hidden Islamic symbols. And it was some 300 years before it resumed.

Read the original article in German

Photo - *** Harold R ***

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Society

A Closer Look At "The French Roe" And The State Of Abortion Rights In France

In 1972, Marie-Claire Chevalier's trial paved the way for the legalization of abortion in France, much like Roe v. Wade did in the U.S. soon after. But as the Supreme Court overturned this landmark decision on the other side of the Atlantic, where do abortion rights now stand in France?

Lawyer Gisèle Halimi accompanies Marie-Claire Chevalier at the Bobigny trial in 1972.

Lila Paulou

PARIS — When Marie-Claire Chevalier died in January, French newspapers described her role in the struggle for abortion rights as an important part of what’s become the rather distant past. Yet since the recent overturning of Roe v. Wade in the United States, Chevalier’s story has returned to the present tense.

A high school student in 1971, Chevalier was raped by a classmate, and faced an unwanted pregnancy. With the help of her mother and three other women, the 16-year-old obtained an abortion, which was illegal in France. With all five women facing arrest, Marie-Claire’s mother Michèle decided to contact French-Tunisian lawyer Gisèle Halimi who had defended an Algerian activist raped and tortured by French soldiers in a high-profile case.

Marie-Claire bravely agreed to turn her trial into a platform for all women prosecuted for seeking an abortion. Major social figures testified on her behalf, from feminist activist Simone de Beauvoir to acclaimed poet Aimé Césaire. The prominent Catholic doctor Paul Milliez, said, “I do not see why us, Catholics, should impose our moral to all French people.”

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