Islamic Council has elected new board with disputed general secretary out

Norway’s largest organization for Muslims, Islamic Council Norway (IRN), is on its feet again. Now, the umbrella organization has a female deputy reported Vårt Land newspaper.

‘’We have learned a lot from what has happened in recent years. One can grow with adversity as well. Now we are looking ahead and we do not focus on the past, but the future’’ Abdirahman Diriye told Vårt Land.

He leads the brand new board of the umbrella organization for Islamic religious communities in Norway, which has existed since 1993, along with Deputy Smaira Iqbal and Information Officer Yasir Ahmed.

After the board protested that the council would not terminate the then Secretary-General, Mehtab Afsar, in 2016, it had been conflicted within the IRN.

In 2017, five major mosques left the organization and started their own network, Muslim Dialogue Network Norway (MDN). The same year, the IRN lost state aid and collaborated with the meat producer, Nortura, on halal certification, and they signed out of the Co-operation Council for the Faith and Vision (STL).

Since then, it has been quiet within the organization, which represents about 65,000 of Norwegian Muslims. When Secretary General, Mehtab Afsar disappeared from the organization in 2018 after seven years, no one would say anything about how or why.

Today, the organization has no employees. The board will do something about this, but a new Secretary-General will not come first.

‘’The position will be more like a general manager who will take care of the daily operations. We have not focused so much on the role itself, but on the tasks the person is to perform’’ Diriye explained.

© NTB Scanpix / #Norway Today