Ikea in Germany gave up its car park for Muslims to perform Eid prayers

World Grigory Matyunin 27-May-2020

The Ikea store in Wetzlar, Germany, opened its car park to 800 Muslims to say their Eid prayers safely, conforming to social distancing requirements.

Places of worship have been permitted to reopen their doors in Germany, however, worshippers are obliged to follow social distancing measures and maintain a minimum of a 1.5m gap between each other.

Kadir Terzi, a chairman for the local mosque, had approached the Ikea store not expecting to receive a positive response. However, the store manager acceded to the request without hesitation.

“I was surprised and happy at the same time … The closing prayer with all Muslims in Wetzlar was like a reward for us,” said Mr Terzi.

Worshippers were assigned individual spaces to lay down their prayer mats. Aerial footage showed hundreds of Muslims praying with Ikea in the background.

The prayers were particularly significant since the holy month of Ramadan had to take place in isolation, without visits from family and friends. Communal prayer, therefore, took on an extremely special dimension. Mr Terzi told the BBC, “It was a completely different Ramadan month, without contacts, without visits, without breaking the fast together.”

The mosque stated: “We would like to express our gratitude to the Wetzlar police, the Wetzlar public order office, management of Ikea Wetzlar, brothers and all that made this extraordinary prayer possible. Thank you so much.”