First Muslim cemetery in Quebec City region inaugurated

The provincial capital’s first Muslim cemetery was inaugurated Sunday, with more than 500 plots in an existing cemetery in Saint-Augustin-de-Desmaures set aside for those of Muslim faith. Sunday, July 9, 2017. TVA

Nearly six months after the deadly attack at a Quebec City mosque, the first Muslim cemetery in the region was inaugurated Sunday.

A portion of an existing cemetery in Saint-Augustin-de-Desmaures, belonging to the Lepine Cloutier/Athos funeral home, was put aside for those of Muslim faith.

The president of the funeral home, Yvan Rodrigue, said in April that plans to allow for Muslim burials were in the works several months prior to the mosque shooting that left six people dead.

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More than 500 plots have been reserved to allow Muslims of the region to bury their dead.

However, the decision to go ahead with the new cemetery was made without the participation of the Centre Culturel Islamique de Quebec, which is leading its own project to open a cemetery in Saint-Apollinaire.

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In an interview with Quebec City’s French daily newspaper Le Soleil, the centre’s secretary Mohamed Kesri explained that the portion of the cemetery in Saint-Augustin-de-Desmaures, would not fulfil the needs of the Muslim community.

According to Kesri, the majority of people prefer knowing their loved ones are buried in a place owned by the community, where the rites and customs will be followed.

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