The Relevance of Islam in Belgium and Future Perspectives

Sergio Castaño Riaño


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Migration in Belgium in the 1960s represented the beginning of a social transformation process that has turned the traditionally Catholic country into a multicultural reality where Islam has achieved more significance. Consequently, the government had to adapt different structures to the new reality, and people had to learn to live together. In this regard, the Muslim community demanded public spaces to develop cultural and religious events. Second and third generations of Belgian Muslims conserve their family roots and require space for Islam in Belgium. As a result, progressively, the state has incorporated soft elements of Sharia Law in national and local legislation to respond to Muslim requirements. This fact has opened a debate in Belgium and has created controversies in some environments. Thus, this article analyses the implementation of Sharia Law legislation in Belgium and its consequences.


Islam; sharia law; Belgium; religion; culture


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