Story By: Feza Uzay, Sub-Editor: Marija Stojkoska, Agency: Newsflash
This is the moment a group of women do saucy warm-up exercises with a mosque in the background before a marathon in a move that has caused widespread outrage among Muslims during Ramadan.
Local news website Life reported that the group of woman we filmed during the warmup in front of the Kul-Sharif mosque in Kazan unaware of the anger that it would generate from believers in the capital of Tatarstan.
In the video, which was posted on the Russian social media platform VKontakte on 3rd May, a group of woman can be seen squatting to music in shorts and leggings.
With the mosque visible in the background, the video ends with the women switching to dancing to the music.
Local news website PDM News reported that the Deputy Mufti of Tatarstan Rafik Mukhametshin told the Podyom newspaper that such actions should not be happening.
He added: “It is unacceptable. Another background could be found. I think these are provocative actions on their part. We do not support such behaviour.”
On the other side, Ekaterina, the woman who filmed the video, explained to Life that the video shows the participants of the Kazan marathon, doing warm-up exercises before running. She claimed that the background was not specifically chosen and it was just random.
Ekaterina added, “We did not pursue any malicious intent, and did not want to offend anyone.”
PDM News reported that some netizens were particularly upset that the controversial video was filmed during the Muslim holy month of Ramadan, the time of fasting and spiritual cleansing of believers.
Others did not see anything terrible in this video and praised the girls’ athletic clothing.
No information was reported as to whether there will be any legal sanctions regarding this situation.