First gay mosque set to open in France by November end
A gay French-Algerian man is set to open the first gay mosque at the end of November in France.
The Turkish daily newspaper Hurriyet first reported about Muhammad Ludovic Lutfi Zahed's plan to establish the mosque.
"In normal mosques, women have to sit in the back seats and wear a headscarf and gay men are afraid of both verbal and physical aggression. After performing the Hajj, I realized that a mosque for gays was a must for gay Muslims who want to perform their prayers," Zahed said.
The Jerusalem Post reported earlier this year on Zahed's marriage to Qiyam al-Din, a South African, during a ceremony outside Paris in February, approved by an imam in France.
The men had previously married in South Africa, where same-sex marriage is legal, but the French Government under then-president Nicolas Sarkozy refused to recognize it, the Jerusalem Post reports.
Zahed told Hurriyet that "we will use a hall in a Buddhist chapel, which will be opened on November 30."
The new mosque will not segregate men from women and will conduct joint gender prayers.
French President Francois Hollande declared his support for the legalization of same-sex marriage during his campaign leading up to his May victory, the report said.
The Catholic Church in France and conservative family associations oppose gay marriage. France currently recognizes civil union partnerships for same-sex couples, the report added.