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US city to see first-ever local council made of Muslims

The three newly elected Muslim candidates will join the three current City Council members who are also Muslim. Advocates with Muslim groups and experts say they do not know of any other city council in the history of the U.S. that has been entirely Muslim.

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A city in the US called Hamtramck elects its first Muslim Mayor. Newly elected Amer Ghalib unseated longtime Hamtramck Mayor Karen Majewski to become the city’s first Arab American and Muslim mayor.

Ghalib managed to win 68% of the vote with 100% of precincts voting. On the other hand, Majewski captured 31% of the vote despite running for the fifth time.

In 2017, Majewski got the support of some Yemeni Americans to win. However this time, the community voted for Ghalib, an immigrant from Yemen.

As per US media, Ghalib’s win will create a political shift within the city, which in recent years, witnessed an increase in its immigrant population. With Ghalib’s election as the new mayor, all of the city’s elected officials will be Muslims.

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As a result of the election, the three elected Muslim candidates will join the three current City Council members who are also Muslim. Additionally, five of them are immigrants and one is a convert to Islam with ancestral roots in Eastern Europe.

Starting in January 2022, the new Hamtramck City Council will consist of Councilman Nayeem Choudhry, newly elected Amanda Jaczkowski, Councilman Mohammed Hassan, Councilman Mohammed Alsomiri, newly elected Adam Albarmaki.

On this note, this makes Hamtramck the first city in the US to have an all-Muslim Council. Advocates with Muslim groups and experts say they do not know of any other city council in the history of the U.S. that has been entirely Muslim.

Hamtramck first drew attention in 2017 when it elected its first Muslim majority council. However, now the entire council will comprise Muslim members.

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Religion to not impact the council’s decision

Council members told the Free Press that religion will not play a role in their decisions.

“We will all take an oath … to protect the Constitution of the United States, and that includes the concept of separation of church and state,” Amanda Jaczkowski said.

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Current City Councilman Mohammed Hassan stressed the same message.

“Religion is not inside the (City Hall) building,” Hassan said. “It’s outside in the mosque and temple and the church. Not in City Hall.”

Hassan added that “nothing will change in council, we remain the same.”

“We respect all the religions,” Hassan said. “Inside the City Hall, we are responsible for the residents … we do our responsibility by the book.”