Fight rages on as Maroochydore 'mosque' pushes ahead
AN ANTI-Islamic group has warned it will stage more angry protests on the streets of Maroochydore following the Muslim community's lodgement of an application to create a place of worship.
The Muslim Organisation Sunshine Coast (MOSC) last week lodged its development application to transform the office buildings in Church St into a place of worship, with a caretakers' residence.
It plans to hold meetings there every Friday.
Do you have an issue with a mosque coming to Maroochydore?
This poll ended on 20 August 2015.
Yes, it makes me feel uncomfortable
No, what right do we have to dictate someone's place of worship
I don't mind if it's built or not, doesn't affect my life
This is not a scientific poll. The results reflect only the opinions of those who chose to participate.
As no substantial changes to the site are intended, the development application will be assessed by council officers and will not require public consultation.
The divisional councillor Jason O'Pray said he also saw no need for the application to go before the council.
"This absolutely meets all the requirements under the act," he said.
"There is no justification to bring it forward."
However, Restore Australia's Mike Holt has warned his group would lead a fight against the development application, with more street protests and threats of action in the High Court.
A planned peaceful protest in September quickly became ugly, with police forced to control 500 people who gathered at the Maroochydore site. Mr Holt said that that angry gathering was "only the beginning".
"We don't want Islam on the Sunshine Coast," Mr Holt said.
"We have seen the problems that have happened in other places and we know this is the thin edge of the wedge.
"We will absolutely stop the building of mosques. If the council does approve this, there is going to be hell to pay.
"The citizens of the Sunshine Coast will be up in arms because of it. What you saw at the mosque protest the first time is nothing.
"We have done a flyer drop across the Sunshine Coast so lots more know about it now.
"There will be a huge protest.
"Many people are angry about this business and we've had enough."
Mr Holt said people would do "what we have to" to stop the "damn mosques". But he said Restore Australia "does not advocate violence" and he expected protests to be peaceful.
"We will mobilise enough people to take this to the High Court and, if need be, the Governor-General," he said.
Restore Australia has more than 10,000 "likes" on its Facebook page.
Mr Holt said the fear was that mosques were "a political and military headquarters, not just a place of worship".
"It's their meeting place to plan jihad and terrorist attacks. That's eventually what the aim of Islam is," he said.
"Islam is a social, political, economic and military ideology with a beard of religion on top."
His views have been strongly rejected by Haset Sali, the author of the book Holy Koran: Simply and a former president of the Australian Federation of Islamic Councils.
Mr Sali said one of the key tenets of the Islamic faith was "there shall be no compulsion" and ideas of "world-domination" were wrong.
"The fundamental requirements of Islam are to believe in God, be honest, turn to God in prayer and be charitable. There is nothing in the Koran about Muslims pursuing world domination," he said.
However, Mr Sali said he could not speak for the members of MOSC, as attempts by him to make contact with them had been unsuccessful.
The MOSC spokesman could not be reached for comment.