Refugee crisis: Saudi Arabia's offer to build 200 mosques in Germany for Syrian refugees branded 'cynical'

‘No, it’s more than cynical. This is no Muslim Brotherhood. Where is the solidarity in the Arab world?’

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The Independent Online

Saudi Arabia’s offer to build 200 mosques in Germany for the thousands of Syrian refugees that had made their way to the country has been branded “cynical” by German politicians.

The offer was made in response to the large numbers of refugees fleeing the crisis in the Middle East, with Saudi Arabia reportedly suggesting to build one mosque for every 100 asylum seekers crossing into Germany.

But Andrew Scheuer, the general secretary of the CSU party in Bavaria, has hit out against the offer,the Daily Mail reported.

“No, it is more than cynical. This is no Muslim Brotherhood. Where is the solidarity in the Arab world?” he asked. His sentiment was echoed by the CSU’s Stephan Mayer, who added that Germany does not need a cash donation to build the mosques but “solidarity with the refugees”.


Richard Dawkins, known for his controversial views on religion, has also waded into to issue, condemning Saudi Arabia’s offer “either as a sick joke or a sick insult to German generosity” as he believes the offer will not directly benefit the refugees seeking asylum in Germany.

Angela Merkel on Monday called for Europe’s leaders to work together and accept joint responsibility to seek a credible response to refugee crisis.

“Germany is willing to help. But it is not just a German challenge, but one for all of Europe,” she said ahead of an emergency summit on Wednesday. “Europe must acto together and take on responsibility. Germany can’t shoulder this task alone.”

Saudi Arabia and its wealthy neighbouring Gulf states have been criticised for keeping their doors shut to refugees while European countries have agreed to take in thousands of asylum seekers.

However, it was reported last week that Saudi Arabia has housed 500,000 Syrians since the start of the civil war. The al Hayat newspaper claimed the thousands of Syrians who had found homes in the state had done so as workers and not refugees.

The BBC estimates the Gulf states have given around £600m in charitable and individual aid donations.