The recent expulsion of Swiss imam Hani Ramadan from France is a reminder that Switzerland is home to several controversial Muslims – some with a reach far beyond Swiss borders. Following are four examples.
Scholar, teacher and imam born in Geneva, Hani Ramadan, 58, is one of six children. His family fled from Egypt to Switzerland following the assassination of their maternal grandfather, Hassan Al-Banna, founder of the Muslim Brotherhood. Ramadan has been director of the controversial Islamic Centre of Geneva since 1995, and leads canton Geneva's Union of Muslim Organisations.
Ramadan came to attention on September 10, 2002, when French daily newspaper Le Monde published a column he penned titled "The misunderstood Sharia", in which he defended the stoning of adulterers, saying it was not as cruel as one might think. He also suggested that HIV was a divine punishment. The controversy that arose from the column's publication let to Ramadan's immediate dismissal from his teaching position.