Teams from IHH Humanitarian Relief Foundation slaughtered 50 sheep in Bolivia on the occasion of their 2013 Qurban Campaign.
Traces of Islam in Bolivia, where more than 1,000 Muslims live, were eliminated during Spanish occupation 400 years ago. Yet, these traces began to emerge again thanks to Mahmoud AmerAbusharar who came from Palestine in 1974.
There is an Islamic center in Santa Cruz which was established by Palestinian, Bangladeshi and Pakistani Muslims under the leadership of Abusharar. The center named,” Centro İslamico Boliviano” has activities in many provinces in Bolivia.
First and only Islamic center in the country
Giving some information about the activities of the Islamic center, Abusharar’s son Isa Amer said: “We perform the Friday and Eid prayers here. We organize Eid programs for children. We conduct religious marriage ceremonies here and slaughter aqiqah animals. We have sports events, we slaughter animals duringEid al-Adha. We perform taraweeh prayers and organize fast-breaking dinners during Ramadan. We collect zakat from Muslims and organize seminars on Islamic issues. We have various activities at schools and universities.”
No Muslim cemetery in the country
Isa Amer’s father purchased a large piece of land outside of Santa Cruz years ago. Isa decided to use this land as a cemetery for Muslims because there is not a Muslim cemetery in the country. Construction of a complex including a bathing cubicle and a watcher’s house was launched next to the cemetery but the construction could not be completed because its cost reached $24,000. Failing to find the necessary amount of money in Bolivia, Isa made a call to the charity givers in Turkey via IHH to help the completion of the construction.
Name of Turks, Kurds, Arabs and others “Turcos”
Most Bolivians do not see any difference between Turks and Arabs and call them “Turcos” as the former residents of the Ottoman Empire. Not only Turks, but also Arabs, Kurds and others are called “Turcos.”