Survey – French and Germans consider Islam “a threat”

Islam is considered a ‘threat’ by millions of French and Germans to their national identity.

A poll by France’s Le Monde newspaper also found a majority in both countries believe Muslims have ‘not integrated properly’. Le Monde ran the results under a headline which brands efforts to get different religious communities to live side by side as a ‘failure’.

France, with seven million, and Germany, 4.3 million, have the largest Muslim communities in Europe. There are 2.4million in Britain.

Last year German Chancellor Angela Merkel conceded that her country’s multicultural society had ‘failed’, while French president Nicolas Sarkozy has also complained about the growing influence of radical Islam. [MailOnline] Read more

A copy of the poll can be obtained from IFOP the French market research company that did the interviewing. Click here

A tabular summary of the results prepared is given below.

Opinion regarding the presence of a Muslim community in one’s country

Question: Generally speaking, would you say the presence of a Muslim community in France/Germany is … ?

% who say presence of Muslim community in France/Germany is:
Country Threat to
Factor of
France 42 22 36
Germany 40 24 26

The original poll result uses the following column headings:

A threat to our country’s identity
A factor of cultural enrichment for our country
Neither one nor the other

Perception of the integration of Muslims

Question: Would you say that today Muslims and people of Muslim origin are well integrated in French/German society?

% who would say Muslims are well integrated in France/Germany
  Yes No  
  Totally Moderately Not very Not at all Total no
France 4 28 48 20 68
Germany 4 21 55 20 75

Why are Muslims poorly integrated

Question: Among the following reasons, which two do you consider best explain why Muslims and people of Muslim origin are poorly integrated in French/German society?

Which two reasons best explain why Muslims are poorly integrated? % saying
Reasons France Germany
Their refusal to integrate in society 61 67
Cultural differences are too great 40 34
Group together in neighbourhoods and schools 37 32
Racism on the part of French/German people 18 15
Economic difficulties and unemployment 20 10
Inadequate actions and budgets by authorities 2 5

Base: Only those believing that Muslims are poorly integrated in society, i.e. 68% of French sample and 75% of German sample

Characteristics associated with Islam

Question: Which three words from the following list correspond most closely to your perception of Islam?

Which three words correspond most closely to your perception of Islam? % saying
Words France Germany
Rejection of western values 31 34
Fanaticism 18 24
Submission 17 14
Violence 6 7
Protection of women 3 2
Justice 3 5
Liberty 2 2
Democracy 1 1
Don’t know 19 11

Adhesion to the principle of the construction of mosques

Question: Are you for, against, or indifferent to the construction of mosques in France/in Germany when there is a demand from believers?

% for, against, or indifferent, to the construction of mosques
Country For Against Indifferent No answer
France 20 39 34 7
Germany 18 50 25 7

Survey Details

France: Sample of 809 persons. Germany: Sample of 801 persons. Representative of the respective populations aged 18 and over. Representativeness is based on the quota method (gender, age, profession of head of household) after stratification by region and size of town.

Data collection: Interviews were conducted through online self-completion questionnaire. Fieldwork dates. France: December 7-9, 2010. Germany: December 3-8, 2010

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