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Islam in Angola

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Title: Islam in Angola  
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Subject: Islam by country, Islam in Africa, Religion in Angola, Islam in Algeria, Islam in Botswana
Collection: Islam by Country, Religion in Angola
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Islam in Angola

Islam in

  1. ^ a b c d e Aristides Cabeche and David Smith (2013-11-28). "Angola accused of 'banning' Islam as mosques closed".  
  2. ^ a b c Oyebade, Adebayo O. Culture And Customs of Angola, 2006. Pages 45–46.
  3. ^
  4. ^ a b c d "2008 Report on International Religious Freedom - Angola". U.S. Department of State. 
  5. ^ a b "Islam Banned in Angola". Las Vegas Guardian Express. Retrieved 2013-11-26. 
  7. ^ "Angola defends barring Islamic groups, denies persecution".  
  8. ^ "Angola: Fire in Huambo Mosque Destroys Documents".  
  11. ^ a b "Muslim Leader Says Angolan Authorities Destroying Mosques".  
  12. ^ a b Vasudevan Sriradhan (2013-11-25). "Angola Bans Islam and Shuts Down All Mosques".  
  13. ^ a b "Angola Denies It Banned Islam, Destroyed Mosques". International Business Times. 2013-11-25. Retrieved 2013-11-26. 
  14. ^ 19 November 2013 (2013-11-19). "Angola: Minister Guarantees Efforts to Fight Illegal Churches".  
  15. ^ Ireneu Mujoco. "Islão já tem 60 mesquitas encerradas - Política - O País - O Jornal da Nova Angola". O País (Angola). Retrieved 2013-11-26. 
  16. ^ "Angola denies banning Islam after outcry". Agence France-Presse. Nov 26, 2013. 
  17. ^ "OIC Probes Facts About Angola Muslims". 2013-11-28. 
  18. ^ "Al-Qaeda tries to enter Angola".  

 This article incorporates public domain material from websites or documents of the United States Department of State.


See also

[18] In 2004 Constantino Vitiaka, the head of information of Angola's national intelligence services, claimed in a radio interview that the Extremist



However, the reports were later denied by the government[13][4] The Ministry of Culture stated, "There is no war in Angola against Islam or any other religion."[16]

In November 2013, some media sources reported that Islam and other belief systems deemed to be contrary to the country's culture had been outlawed in Angola.[5][14][15] The International Business Times said that Angola was seeking to shut down all mosques.[12]

"Ban on Islam" controversy

Angolan Minister of Culture said "The legalisation of Islam has not been approved...their mosques will be closed until further notice."[12] The Angolan Embassy in the United States said it was not aware of this remark.[13][4] A spokesperson for the Angolan police said that he was unaware of any government order to shut down mosques. However, Voice of America found a government document telling an official to demolish the "Zango 1" mosque in Viana Luanda province.[11]

According to the Islamic Community of Angola, a total of 60 mosques, mostly outside of Luanda, have been shut down in 2013. Voice of America reported seeing a video that showed the demolition of a mosque in Saurimo.[11]

In January 2012, the Angolan government prevented Muslims from building a mosque in Dundo, Lunda Norte Province, even though the Muslim group had a license to do so. In May 2012, the police chained the doors of a building used by Muslims as a mosque and told them to cease praying there. Muslim leaders wrote letters in response, but received no response.[6]

In November 2011, Angolan authorities tore down a structure being used as a mosque in Cacuaco without notice and without a written order of violation.[10] In December 2011, a Muslim group in the Malanje Province purchased some land, and applied to obtain permission to build a mosque. The Muslim group repeatedly asked the authorities to either grant or deny the application, but received no response. After waiting several months, when the Muslim group began construction, Angolan authorities arrived and destroyed the mosque foundation. The authorities did not provide either a denial of the application, or a citation for offense.[10]

On September 4, 2010, authorities closed a mosque in Cazenga without prior notice or justification. The mosque reopened a month later.[9]

In July 2010, unidentified arsonists set fire to a mosque in Huambo, causing extensive damage.[8] A Muslim leader later said the mosque was burned "a day after authorities had warned us that we should not have built the mosque where we had and that it had to be built somewhere else."[1]

The International Religious Freedom Report stated that the Angolan government selectively shut down mosques, schools and community centres.[6] Angolan officials denied that a government had a policy to close mosques, there were reports of local authorities closing mosques or preventing their construction on several occasions.

Restrictions on mosques

Adebayo Oyebade estimates that Muslims make up 1 to 2.5 percent of Angola's population.[2] The US State Department states that the estimated Muslim population is 80,000-90,000, but notes that some sources put the population size closer to 500,000.,[6] which appears to be highly unrealistic.

Historically, Angola did not have a significant Muslim population. During the 21st century, Angola's Muslim community has grown. Most Muslims in Angola are businessmen and migrants from West Africa and the Middle East, especially Lebanon.[4] Very few Angolans have converted to Islam as a result of Muslim missionary activity in Angola. Most of these conversion occurred during the Angolan Civil War, when many Angolans fled to countries with a significant Muslim presence and came into contact with Islam there.[2]


In November 2013, Angolan foreign minister [7]

The US State Department reports that the government often permits non-registered groups to exist and function, but notes of instances of Angolan authorities shutting down mosques (see section below).[6]

The government requires religious groups to petition for legal status. Upon recognition, these groups are allowed to build schools and places of worship. In order to be recognized, a group must have more than 100,000 and be present in 12 out of 18 provinces.[6] The population of Muslims, however, is estimated at only 90,000.[1] While the government has given legal status to 83 religious groups (all of them Christian[1]), it has not given legal status to any Muslim groups.[6] The president of the Islamic Community of Angola has criticized Angola's threshold for recognition by stating, "You need 100,000 to be recognised as a religion or officially you cannot pray".[1]

The 2010 Angolan Constitution guarantees freedom of religion to all of its citizens.[4][5]

Legal status


  • Legal status 1
  • Demographics 2
  • Restrictions on mosques 3
  • "Ban on Islam" controversy 4
  • Incidents 5
  • See also 6
  • References 7


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