It is more than 500 years since the Spanish reconquered the Iberian peninsula, killing or expelling every confessed Muslim who could be found and conclusively ending 800 years of Islamic rule.
But on Thursday, a muezzin is calling Spanish Muslims to prayer at the first mosque to be opened in Granada since the reconquista, the culmination of a 22-year-old project that has been plagued by controversy.
For those who built the Great Mosque of Granada, which looks out onto the once highly symbolic Alhambra Palace, its inauguration – attended by a string of Muslim and non-Muslim dignitaries – heralds a new dawn for the faith in Europe.
“The mosque is a symbol of a return to Islam among the Spanish people and among indigenous Europeans that will break with the malicious concept of Islam as a foreign and immigrant religion in Europe,” says Abdel Haqq Salaberria, a spokesman for the mosque and convert to Islam.
“It will act as a focal point for the Islamic revival in Europe.”