US & Canada

Northernmost mosque in North America opens in Canada

The mosque being shipped along a river
The mosque travelled some 4,500km along both rivers and roads before arriving in Inuvik

The northernmost mosque in North America has opened in Inuvik, in Canada's Northwest Territories, where there is a growing Muslim population.

After being assembled in the city of Winnipeg, the building travelled some 4,500km (2,800 miles) along both rivers and roads to get to its destination.

The mosque, which has been nicknamed "the little mosque on the tundra", doubles as a community centre.

Inuvik has roughly 3,200 residents, some 80 of whom are Muslim.

They are mainly Sunni Muslims from Lebanon, Egypt and Sudan who were drawn to northern Canada by job opportunities.

'Everyone is welcome'

"It's a very personal achievement for all of us because we were in a small building, the old one, and now we have this one," Ahmed al-Khalaf told the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation.

The new 1,554-sq-ft (144-sq-m) building is a step up from the one-bedroom trailer Muslims in the town have used for prayer services over the past 10 years.

At one point during the mosque's journey to the small town in the Arctic Circle, the building almost tipped over but was saved by a road construction crew.

"For the whole town of Inuvik, it's another new building in town, and everybody's welcome here," Mr Khalaf said.

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