​Putin: Islam is an integral part of Russian life

Moscow’s Grand Mosque opened after a decade of construction works

Baku. 23 September. REPORT.AZ/ Moscow’s Grand Mosque, which has opened after a decade of construction work, will become an important religious center and a source of humanist enlightenment among Muslims, Mr. Putin said.

"I am convinced that the Grand Mosque will become for the Muslims of Moscow and all Russia an important religious center and a source of enlightenment, spreading humanist ideas and true values of Islam, will carry knowledge and spirituality and will help unite efforts of not only Muslims but also people of other religions for the sake of common benefits," Putin said at the mosque’s opening ceremony also attended by Turkish and Palestinian leaders Recep Tayyip Erdogan and Mahmoud Abbas.

Report informs citing Russian media, he congratulated Muslims on this important event, adding that the mosque has become Europe’s largest.

Putin reminded the ceremony’s guests that Russia has always been a multinational and multi-confessional country.

"For example, Moscow’s Muslim community was formed in the Middle Ages and the names of many-many streets of our capital have Tatar roots," the president said thanking everyone who donated funds on the mosque’s reconstruction.

As a result of the construction work, the building’s floor space has been increased twenty-fold to 19,000 square meters and the mosque will be able to accommodate up to 10,000 people simultaneously.

The mosque was originally expected to open in May 2016, but authorities decided to speed up the work and hold the opening ceremony this year celebrating the 70th anniversary of the Great Patriotic War (1941-1945).

The Grand Mosque in Moscow, built in 1904, is the second largest and has been under reconstruction since 2005, costing some $170 million.

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