Why Muslims Hate the Cross: Part 2

By Raymond Ibrahim Published on April 10, 2023

In Part 1 of this article, we documented Islam’s doctrinal and historical hate for the crucifix. Here we demonstrate continuity by documenting modern day examples, categorized according to theme.

General Hate for and Attacks on the Cross

USA: Ali Alaheri, a 29-year-old Muslim man, knocked down and destroyed a large crucifix that had stood for 11 years outside of St. Athanasius Church in Bensonhurst, Brooklyn, N.Y. “It was a terrible morning,” reflected Monsignor David Cassato. “It was probably the saddest day in my life, to see this desecration of a cross of Jesus.”


  • In the Alps and in Bavaria alone, countless crosses on some 200 churches were desecrated and broken: “Police are currently dealing with church desecrations again and again,” says the report. “The perpetrators are often youthful rioters with a migration background.”
  • Before Christmas, in the North Rhine-Westphalia region, where more than a million Muslim migrants reside, some 50 public statues of Jesus and other Christian figures were beheaded and crucifixes broken.
  • Following the arrival of another million Muslim migrants to Dülmen, a local newspaper said “not one day goes by” without attacks on crosses and other Christian symbols.


  • A Muslim migrant invaded an old church in Venice and attacked its large, 300-year-old cross, breaking off one of its arms, while shouting, “All that is in a church is false!”
  • After a crucifix was destroyed in close proximity to a populated mosque, the area’s mayor said concerning the identity of the culprit(s): “Before we put a show of unity with Muslims, let’s have them begin by respecting our civilization and our culture.”


  • An enraged Muslim man physically twisted a massive bronze cross with his bare hands while committing major acts of vandalism in two churches. He also overturned and broke two altars, destroyed Christian statues, tore down a tabernacle, smashed in a sacristy door, and broke some stained-glass windows.
  • “Vandals” cut down an iconic iron cross that had stood on the summit of Pic Saint-Loup since 1911 and was visible for miles around.
  • More “unknown vandals” desecrated and smashed crosses and statues at Saint-Alain Cathedral in Lavaur; they mangled the arms of a crucified Christ in a mocking manner.


  • In broad daylight, a man climbed the fence of a historic Armenian church in Istanbul and proceeded to yank off its metal cross and hurl it to the ground, as captured on surveillance footage.
  • President Erdoğan complained to German Chancellor Angela Merkel because a 50-foot high cross erected at a Greek monastery near the Greek/Turkish border is visible in Turkey.
  • Before and during a soccer match against a German team, Istanbul police removed the flags and banners of soccer fans because they had the symbol of a cross, which is part of the German team’s logo (a coat of arms with a black cross on a yellow background). The German team and its fans also reported general harassment from the Muslim authorities for carrying their customary Christian symbols during their stay in Turkey.


  • An armed Muslim mob shouting “anti-Christian slogans” attacked and tried to set fire to the Trinity Pentecostal Church in Hakeem Pura. Although they ultimately failed, they managed to sate their ire on one aspect of the church: “Not only was the cross broken, but our hearts were crushed too,” said a Christian eyewitness.
  • After receiving complaints and threats from local Muslims, a church congregation, “With broken hearts,” to quote its pastor, agreed to take down the cross from their church: “We took this decision for the safety and protection of Christians in the village…. Muslims threatened that if we don’t remove the cross, they will ban the prayer services and take the church property.”
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Syria: To triumphant cries of “Allahu Akbar,” a cross was ripped down from a Greek orthodox church in a region “controlled by U.S.-backed militants.”

Sudan: After a ninth church was torched in Sudan, “They targeted the church,” said the Rev. Kuwa Shamal of the Sudanese Church of Christ, “because they do not want to see any sign of the cross in the area.”

Armenia: A soldier — unclear whether an Azeri or a jihadist mercenary from Syria or Iraq — was videotaped triumphantly shouting “Allahu Akbar!” while standing atop an Armenian church, the chapel cross of which had been ripped down.

Violence Against and Murder of Cross-Wearers


  • Three Muslim men murdered two Christian brothers because they hung a cross on the rearview mirror of their car.
  • When a Muslim man saw Julie Aftab, a Christian woman, wearing a cross around her neck, he attacked her, forced acid down her throat, and splashed it on her face — permanently damaging her esophagus, blinding her in one eye, and causing her to lose both eyelids and most of her teeth.
  • Muslims ransacked and severely beat the employees of a Christian store for displaying a cross and other Christian symbols. Police responded by arresting one of the owners on the accusation that by hanging a cross he was evangelizing to Muslims.

Burkina Faso: “Looking for Christians,” Muslim terrorists identified and slaughtered four men for wearing crucifixes.


  • A Muslim migrant in Rome stabbed and nearly killed an Italian man in the throat for wearing a crucifix around his neck.
  • A Muslim boy from Africa picked on, insulted, and eventually beat a 12-year-old girl during school because she was wearing a crucifix.


  • While cursing his “pig god,” Muslim migrants beat and repeatedly stabbed a homeless man in Berlin for displaying a Christian symbol, believed to be a cross. The report adds that such incidents are not uncommon: “Recently, a 39-year-old had been beaten for wearing a necklace with a cross on it.”
  • After checking himself into a hospital a Muslim man went into a sudden frenzy because there were “too many crosses on the wall.” He called the nurse a “bitch” and “fascist” and became physically aggressive.

Sweden: A little Swedish boy, 11, was called a “pig bastard” and beaten by Muslim migrants for wearing a cross. The incident occurred in Malmö, which has a large Muslim population and is known as the “rape capital” of Sweden.

Maldives: Authorities had to rescue a female Christian teacher after Muslim “parents threatened to tie and drag her off of the island” for “preaching Christianity.” Her actual crime was to draw a compass — which was mistaken for a cross — as part of a geography lesson in class.


  • A 12-year-old boy wearing a silver cross necklace in class was spit on and beaten regularly by Muslim classmates and teachers.
  • Two Muslim men beat a Christian teenager in the street after they noticed he was wearing a crucifix around his neck.

The Desecration of Crucifixes in Cemeteries

France: A Muslim man was apprehended for desecrating over 200 Christian crosses and gravestones in a cemetery.


  • Ten Muslim schoolchildren, between the ages of 5 and 12, broke the crosses off a dozen gravestones in a Christian cemetery. The mayor of Solo laid the blame on the Islamic madrasa the children attend, and its teachers, “because they are teaching intolerance to their students.”
  • Several crosses in the Bethesda Christian cemetery were vandalized, broken and burned, to the point that the cemetery keeper who had worked there for 10 years said he had “never seen such vandalism.”
  • Local Muslims sawed off the top of a cross from a deceased Christian’s tomb and prevented mourners from meeting and saying prayers in the same dead man’s home.

Malaysia: A Christian cemetery was attacked and desecrated in the middle of the night by unknown persons in the Muslim-majority nation. Several crosses were destroyed, including by the use of “a heavy tool to do the damage.”

Pakistan: Several crosses fixed to the tombstones of 38 Christian graves at a cemetery were desecrated and defaced.

Turkey: After locals interrupted the burial of a Christian woman — in part by shouting, “Allahu Akbar!” —  her grave was later found desecrated by her husband who came to mourn: its wooden cross was broken off and burned. The priest of the church which the deceased woman was a member of, Father Andrea Santoro, was himself murdered in 2006 when a 16-year-old, also shouting “Allahu Akbar,” shot the priest in the back of the head while he was kneeling in prayer inside the church.

Germany: After Muslims were granted their own section at a cemetery, and after being allowed to conduct distinctly Islamic ceremonies, these same Muslims began demanding that Christian crosses in the cemetery be removed or at least covered up during Islamic funerals.

(There are many more examples of the macabre Muslim practice of desecrating Christian graves. Click here for more documentation.)

And so, as you celebrate this Easter season, know that not everyone in this world feels the same way about the crucifixion and resurrection of Jesus Christ — as well demonstrated by Islam’s past and present war on the crucifix.


Raymond Ibrahim, author of Defenders of the West and Sword and Scimitar is the Distinguished Senior Shillman Fellow at the Gatestone Institute and the Judith Rosen Friedman Fellow at the Middle East Forum.

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