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Mosques should not be taking sides: Dr Yaacob

Minister-in-charge of Muslim Affairs Dr Yaacob Ibrahim said mosques as an institution are inclusive and exist to serve the Muslim community.

SINGAPORE: Mosques are neutral religious places and should not be taking sides.

Minister-in-charge of Muslim Affairs Dr Yaacob Ibrahim said mosques as an institution are inclusive and exist to serve the Muslim community.

Dr Yaacob said this when asked by reporters about the LGBT (lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender) issue at the launch of "Touch of Ramadan" celebrations at Ahmad Ibrahim Mosque on Sunday (June 22) morning.

The Muslim Religious Council (MUIS) issued an advisory on Friday (June 20) which cautioned against adopting a "confrontational approach" towards those who are involved in LGBT lifestyles.

Dr Yaacob said: "It is important for us to remember that mosque is a neutral religious platform. It is there to serve the Muslim community of all shapes, shades. And if you are there to fulfil your religious obligations, the mosque will be there for you.

"At the same time, the mosque can allow other activities such as social activities and we want to reach out to as many Muslims as possible. It has to be on a note which is inclusive, all-embracing and that was the purpose of the advisory so that we don't take sides, and more importantly we open our doors to anyone.

"And if you respect the mosque, you are welcome to the mosque because the mosque is a place for us to do our worship, to do good activities, social activities, bring people together and that's what we want to continue to maintain."

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