Paraguay is a small country which is lodged in between much larger nations.
It has great potention, but is notoriously corrupt.
There is an Arab community, a mix of Lebanese,Syrian, and Palestinian. The vast majority, as usual, is Christian. The Lebanese community has already produced a Presidential Candidate. Pedro Fadul (Spanish).
Starting in the 50s, Muslim communities started to set themselves up, especially around Ciudad del Este, a Wild West of a tax free port. First Sunnis; later Shi’a. However, the number is still very small, only 507 Muslims according to this Wikipedia page; but another page on Wikipedia lists 872 Muslims in a 1992 Census. Almost certainly, that number has increased, though we are still dealing with only 0.02% of the population.
Clearly, Wikipedia has to be double checked to get reliable results.
The number of Muslims is not a threat. Clearly, if left to their own devices – given South America’s Christian history – in two (2) generations about half of them would be assimilated and intermarried into one Christian denomination or another.
But, Paraguay is a place where it is easy to generate lots of cash by smuggling, counterfeiting products, and trade. Money laundering is not a crime. So a few Muslims could set up shop and make millions to send back to the Mideast in support of Hamas or Hezbollah.
This is what has law enforcement from many countries worried about Paraguay.
Paraquay is a smuggler’s haven.
Paraguay’s laws are quite lax; and so money can be made quite easily, in a fashion that would be considered illegal in other countries.