news 16 Nov 12

Bosnia Muslims Appoint New Chief Mufti

Bosnia's Islamic Community has a new Chief Mufti in Husein Kavazovic, replacing Mustafa Ceric, who led the community for 19 years.

Elvira M. Jukic

Ceremony inside the Gazi Husrev-bay Mosque in Sarajevo

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Husein Effendi Kavazovic was sworn in as Reisu-l-ulema of the Islamic Community in Bosnia on November 15, vowing to work to improve the life of Bosniaks and the religious community.

“I want to continue all the good and useful practices of the former Reis,” Kavazovic said, “We shall focus the consciousness of Bosniaks on the issues of security and welfare in society and the country, and education and science development will be encouraged too.”

Kavazovic was Mufti of the northeast Bosnian town of Tuzla before he took the post of the chief mufti from Mustafa Effendi Ceric who led the Islamic Community for 19 years.

Speaking at the central Sarajevo Gazi Husrev-bay Mosque on Thursday, he said that the whole community needed to unite to improve their lives, and, together with the other peoples of Bosnia, work on strengthening Bosnia and Herzegovina and advancing its progress.

He added that he will also take care of Muslims outside Bosnia, referring to those in Croatia, Serbia, Slovenia, Montenegro, Kosovo and Macedonia as well as the Bosniak diaspora.

“We are part of the European reality and an authentic Islamic people of Europe and the world community and we will behave responsibly and feel equal,” Kavazovic said.

The former Reis, Mustafa Ceric, also spoke at the event, wishing luck to his successor and adding that Bosniaks need a strong leader in the current situation.

“The most important thing for the existence of Bosniaks has been a spiritual and brave political leadership,” Ceric said, “Now more than ever the Bosniak people need strong and brave spritual, national and political leaders like they had sometimes in the past.”

Kavazovic comes from Gradacac, near Tuzla. He attended Islamic high school in Sarajevo and studied Sharia law in Cairo, Egypt. He held the post of Mufti in Tuzla from 1993.

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