A website hosted by Islam Online (IOL), the Islamic news portal associated with global Muslim Brotherhood leader Youssef Qaradawi, has announced a campaign called “2009: Year of the Muslim Family in Europe.” The announcement describes the launch of the campaign and its sponsorship by the Federation of Islamic Organizations in Europe (FIOE) and other organizations close to the global Muslim Brotherhood:
We are a large coalition of Islamic institutions inside and outside Europe which is concerned with the European Muslim family. Since all the members of this coalition believe that the family is the core of the society’s stability, they decided to consider the family’s related-issues as a top priority for the Muslim minority in Europe. Consequently, the coalition marked the year 2009 for launching the campaign entitled, 2009: Year of the Muslim Family in Europe. The campaign was first initiated by the Federation of Islamic Organizations in Europe (FIOE) in partnership with a number of the FIOE’s member organizations across the EU. In fact, many companies and sponsors all over the Islamic world in different fields of specialization and on various levels showed a great turn out for this campaign, like the Kuwaiti Ministry of Awqaf and Islamic Affairs, Muslim World League, IslamOnline.net, Islamtoday.com, Al-Hiwar TV, Ana TV Channel, International Forum for Muslim Women, International Islamic Committee for Women and Child adherent to the International Islamic Council for Da’wa and Relief, and others.
The IOL announcement goes on to describe the goals of the campaign:
Our campaign is an open initiation for all Islamic (non-Islamic) institutions that adopt the same values and goals for achieving the campaign’s aims. Therefore, our utmost goal, on the one hand, is to reach stability of the Muslim families in Europe. On the other hand, we hope that such aim would be a mutual goal for all the participant and non- participant organizations It is truly an open invitation for all those interested in effective participation in the campaign. Our campaign is accommodated to include institutions as well as individuals who are keen to add to this strategic goal and are having an appropriate capacity to reach it. It also deals with all family-related issues on a wide range such as:
First: Raising awareness and paying more attention to family concerns as well as working on avoiding common challenges facing Muslim families in Europe.
Second: Issuing a reference guide to the Muslim families in the west which will include all activities, programs, researches of both scientists and family specialists, both European and non-European, in all relevant fields.
Third: Forming a specialized European institution for Muslim families’ affairs that shall continue on the campaign’s track while following a stable institutional system.
The remaining web pages linked to the campaign comprise various social issues such as marriage, parenting, teenagers and family and consist of topics and questions which then link to various fatwas carried on the IOL website.
A report by the NEFA Foundation on the Federation of Islamic Organizations in Europe (FIOE) characterizes the group as follows:
The Federation of Islamic Organizations in Europe (FIOE) claims to be an independent organization representing the interests of Muslims in Europe. In reality, the FIOE is an umbrella group that comprises the global Muslim Brotherhood in Europe. Strong links connect FIOE’s leadership central institutions and member organizations to the Brotherhood, as well as to Saudi Arabia. Funding for the FIOE is derived largely from Gulf sources, including some of the ruling families of the United Arab Emirates. The FIOE has strong ties to Hamas and Hamas fund-raising organizations, and some FIOE member organizations show evidence of links with Al-Qaida. The FIOE has recently opened a headquarters office in Brussels and has had some success in positioning itself as a “dialog partner” for the EU and other important institutions.