By Madeeha Bakhsh –
Gatestone Institute in a recent report pointed towards the escalating hatred directed towards Christians and other minorities in Turkey. Gatestone a U.S. based non-profit international policy council maintains that Christians are being abused by the government officials and on social media.
Christians persecuted in Middle East
“This hatred of Christians and Kurds in Turkey is not restricted to government officials. It is widespread among the public, as well, and expressed extensively on social media,” the report says. The council further shed light on the matter: “The situation of minorities in Turkey and their persecution by Turkey — a member of NATO and perpetual candidate for EU membership — must be told as often and as loudly as possible.”
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Further throwing light on the dilemma of the Christians in Diyarbakir a Turkish town; a magazine was quoted stating that: “Armenian, Syriac and Chaldean Christians have not been able to worship in their churches for the last three years.” The weekly Armenian-Turkish weekly Agos in an article published in August 2017, revealed that the underlying reason was that all properties belonging to the local Armenian, Assyrian (Syriac), Chaldean and Protestant Christians were expropriated as part of the expropriation plan adopted by the Turkish cabinet in March 2016.
“Among the Christian properties expropriated are the Armenian Catholic, the Chaldean Mor Petyun and the Armenian Surp Giragos churches,” Gatestone report adds. Without any doubt Surp Giragos is the largest Armenian Church nestled in the Middle East.
In its report, Gatestone also quotes Ahmet Güvener, a pastor of the Diyarbak?r Protestant Church, that the anti-Christian practices in the country are not a new trend. “We have been exposed to ethnic and religious discrimination for years,” he told during an interview that ever since Turkish Republic was founded in 1923, not even a single church has been erected. “The state, which spends billions [of Turkish liras] and builds gigantic mosques, has not built a church so far,” he said.