Turkey: ESU presents Annual Report on Syriac people to European Commission

Delegation from European Syriac Union, ESU, presented its annual report to the European authorities in the Commission regarding the situation of Syriac people in Turkey.

Delegation consisted from ESU Co-Chair Tony Vergili and member of Foreign Affairs Jacques Eliazar met Commission officials at the Turkey's desk while presenting the report and discussing annual situation of the Syriac people and recent social and political process in the country.

Following the failed coup attempt in Turkey, under the leadership of Recep Tayyip Erdogan and AKP governments, country entered new process with bold discourse of nationalism, islamism and anti western rhetoric and little room left for Christian minorities and different groups in the country, states ESU report.

"Since two years and especially following the failed military coup, Turkey under the leadership of Justice and Development Party, AKP and its leader Recep Tayyip Erdoğan entered new era with high dose of Islamism, hostile nationalism, totalitarian and anti-Western tendencies by mobilizing his followers by sectarian, religious and heinous discourse against different segment of society including minorities and Christian groups in the country.

This new path of Turkey which is also a deep trouble with its foreign policy opened a channel to various Islamist/Jihadist groups in the country and especially in the south east part of the country.

Turkey under the governance of AKP will undoubtedly continue its Islamist agenda for the future by islamising all social, cultural and daily life in the country. There are already dozen of signs from AKP discourses and media outlets that AKP will continue this trend. Within this context, little room left for opposition groups, dissidents, minorities and to non-dominant groups.

Syriac people who are living in Istanbul and south east, Turabdin region, lacks essential tools for making their voice and demands heard by national and international interlocutors. Thus, a close coordination and observation of Syriac people is fundamental to avoid more difficulties and harassments."

On the other hand, annual ESU report highlighted problems faced in Turkey during the year as the detention and arrest of several Syriac people, difficulties faced in Bethzabday and Diyarbakir Virgin Mary churches during the clashes between state and Kurdish forces and also desecration of Syriac cemetery in Adiyaman, and finally ongoing land issues of Mor Gabriel Monastery.

ESU Co-Chair Tony Vergili stated that meeting with Commission official was excellent opportunity to discuss situation of Syriacs in Turkey and that they will continue their relations with European officials.

As an international civil society organisation ESU works on different fields and with various actors to bring more attention to the cause of Chaldean-Syriac-Assyrian people in their homeland and diaspora.


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Date: 09/06/2017




Religion/Religious minorities

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Name: David Vergili

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