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Muslims pray at Colosseum, protesting against Rome mosque closures
by Isla Binnie
Hundreds of Muslims prayed next to Rome's Colosseum on Friday to protest against the closure of makeshift mosques, calling on city authorities to protect their religious rights.
Worshippers knelt on prayer mats and tarpaulin on the pavement meters away from the ancient amphitheatre. Some held placards reading "Peace" and "Open the mosques".
At least 1.6 million Muslims live in Italy but there are only a handful of mosques officially registered as such with the government.
Most worship takes place in houses and Islamic cultural centers - a development that some right-wing politicians have said makes them difficult to monitor, raising the risk of radicalization, particularly in the wake of militant attacks across Europe.
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