VIENNA – More than 300 clerics representing the majority of Austria's Muslims are expressing support for a declaration condemning extremism and terrorism and urging their followers to integrate by actively participating in Austrian society.
The initiative was launched by the Society of the Islamic Faith in Austria, which normally speaks for all Muslim groups in the country. At a signing ceremony Wednesday, society head Ibrahim Olgun said the declaration was meant as a clarification for the "black sheep" among Muslims who turn to extremism in the name of their religion.
The document condemns "terrorist and extremist violence worldwide." It supports "pluralism, democracy and the rule of law as outlined in the Austrian constitution."
Olgun says about 180 imams signed the declaration while the others sent emails of support.