The much-troubled project to build a mosque in Athens has suffered another, albeit minor, setback as authorities have indicated that work will be completed in July, a couple of months later than previously expected.
A decision issued by the Infrastructure Ministry indicates that the construction work has been extended because protests last year held up the start of the scheme. Also, the government has asked for old buildings that are on the site to be knocked down.
This work had not been originally envisioned as part of the project, which is being carried out by a consortium consisting of J&P-Avax, Terna, Aktor and Intrakat.
The mosque – a 1,000-square meter building without a minaret, split over two levels – will be able to accommodate about 350 worshippers. It is being constructed at an old naval base in Votanikos, an industrial, run-down neighborhood west of central Athens. When completed, it will be the first official place of worship for Muslims in the Greek capital.