Georgian Minister of Justice invites public to discuss issue of minarets
Georgia, Tbilisi, Aug. 27 /Trend, N. Kirtzkhalia /
Issues surrounding minarets in Georgia should not be tabooed, and sooner or later, the society will have to discuss the issue, Georgia's Justice Minister Tea Tsulukiani said at a briefing on Tuesday.
Tsulukiani made these remarks when she was commenting the situation in the village of Chela of Adigeni region (Samtskhe-Javakheti, South Georgia), where a minaret was recently dismantled.
The Revenue Service of the Georgian Ministry of Finances said that the minaret was dismantled in order to verify the construction's weight and its commercial code. After this, the agency promises to restore the minaret.
These actions caused dissatisfaction in Georgia's Muslim population.
Protests were held in various Georgian cities.
"Chela is the first situation, and it is possible that this will lead to the solution of such a general issue as minarets. This topic should not be tabooed, and the Georgian society will sooner or later have to discuss without emotion and confrontation, the question is whether there should be minarets in the country,"- Tsulukiani, said.
The Justice Minister also said that referendums were held in many European countries, and the people of these countries refused to allow minarets.
Tsulukiani noted that the absence of minarets "will not prevent praying in the mosque."
Protests were held in a number of Georgian cities in connection with the dismantling of the minaret. A protest was also held in the village of Chela, where 11 people were arrested. The minaret was built in Chela village a month an half ago.