Eight young people answer eight tough questions about Muslims in Germany

Politics

Do you feel German?

Aya (18 years old from Bielefeld) is one of the participants in the 2017 Young Islam Conference in Berlin. She says: "I feel more German than Moroccan. I grew up with German culture and have a much greater connection to it than to what you could call my other country." So what did some of her fellow participants say about other questions concerning Islam in Germany?

Politics

Is Europe being Islamified?

Martin (22, Flensburg) says: "No. Europe is getting more culture. I think Europe is going through some painful learning phases at the moment - the Brexit is an example of that. But if you look at the statistics and facts, Europe is not being Islamified. That's just false. You can't support that thesis. It's nonsense."

Politics

What does integration mean for you?

Volkan (24, Siegen) says: "For me it's mainly the feeling of belonging, of not being excluded. As someone from an immigrant background, you get asked a lot of questions that make you realize that you don't really belong. That really bothered me as a child. No matter where I was or what I did, I was always the outsider."

Politics

What needs repairing in relations between Muslims and non-Muslims?

Hannah (Kiel, 21) says: "I think the problem in Germany is that people talk a lot about one another instead of talking to one another. We've never learned how to go up to someone and ask: 'Why are you wearing a headscarf?' If you don't take an interest in Islam, you'll never be able to answer such questions. It's so easy to approach someone with a headscarf and ask her to explain."

Politics

What bothers you most about media depictions of Muslims?

Merve (19, Duisburg): "What irritates me about how Muslims are portrayed is when we're reduced to one single external attribute. For instance, I choose to wear a headscarf. But that doesn't mean I'm some poor helpless thing. And there's much more to me than that. For instance, I'm someone who's proud to be from Duisburg."

Politics

What should be done about anti-Muslim hate speech and fake news?

Ahmed (25, Cologne) says: "The most important thing is always dialogue. With fake news or hate speech on social media, I'd always be ready for a discussion. Especially with Facebook, I'd have the courage to comment on things. I'm very active. I reactivated my facebook account one month ago to take part in the debate about Turkey. It's important for me to discuss things rationally."

Politics

What would you say to anti-immigrant movements like Pegida or the AfD?

Aylin (19, Selent) says: "I wouldn't say anything. It would make no sense to talk to these groups. Some people are unwilling to change their minds. The AfD are very convinced of their views, and those left in Pegida must be as well. Those views are, in part, forbidden by the constitution. But I think that at the moment this is just a trend and that many people will come to their senses."

Politics

Is Islam part of Germany?

Paul, (19, Kiel) says: "Definitely. Germany is a geographical area in which one society lives and acts. Every group that lives in this area is part of Germany. If I live in Germany, I'm part of Germany, and I have the right to say 'I'm German.' As far as I'm concerned people don't even have to speak the language."

This year's Young Islam Conference has the theme "repairing dialogue." But is dialogue between Muslims and non-Muslims really broken? And if so, how can it be fixed? DW asked eight of the participants.