Organizers of a march of Muslims against terrorism in Cologne, Germany, were hoping to see as many as 10,000 show up Saturday to prove that the "religion of peace" did not condone terrorism. They were disappointed in that expectation.
Euronews reported that only "several hundred" Germans, mostly Muslims, showed up to the march.
Today hundreds of Ahmadi Muslims march for peace in Cologne holding banners with their slogan 'Love for all, Hatred… https://t.co/HSz11oXhi9— Islam Ahmadiyya 🇩🇪 (@Islam Ahmadiyya 🇩🇪) 1497711037.0
ABC News reported that more than 1,000 eventually showed up to the march.
Germany's largest organization of Muslims, Ditib, declined to support the march, while the Turkish-Islamic Union spoke out against the demonstration, saying that it would only affirm the narrative that terrorism is an exclusively Islamic problem.
“Calls for ‘Muslim’ anti-terror demos fall too short, stigmatize Muslims, and constrict international terrorism to being just among them, and within their communities and mosques,” Ditib said in a statement.
“We welcome public action, but reject the way in which this march has been organized,” Ditib concluded.
Newsweek publicized the march on Friday, in an article estimating how many would show up. "Around 10,000 people are expected to gather in the German city under the slogan “Not With Us” for the Ramadan peace march," the post read, "first announced on June 7."
Attendees posted photographs and videos from the event on social media.
"It's not the Muslims fault!" - thinks a participant at the anti-terrorism rally in Cologne. #NichtMitUns #NotWithUs https://t.co/9cmFSXradP— Arafatul Islam (@Arafatul Islam) 1497706521.0
Özlenim and Klaus family is present at #NichtMitUns event to protest Islamic extremism. Their message: "United in p… https://t.co/0dfiQQAHXD— Arafatul Islam (@Arafatul Islam) 1497698311.0
"I ❤️ Jesus, because Allah loved him!" reads a banner at the rally against extremism in Cologne today. #NichtMitUns… https://t.co/HboxhoBoho— Arafatul Islam (@Arafatul Islam) 1497706076.0
Number of participants at Muslim peace march in Cologne were far less than expected. Is it because DITIB's absence?… https://t.co/F91EVvj9ZU— Arafatul Islam (@Arafatul Islam) 1497711340.0
"Muslims always stand up against terrorism," said one attendee, "but it's not covered in mainstream media, mostly, they focus on those people who commit the terrorism, who commit the murders."