Turkish President slams Greece over Muslim minority rights

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Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan has accused Greece on Monday of undermining Muslim minority rights in the country’s northeastern Thrace region.

Speaking at a gathering of the Organisation of Islamic Cooperation (COMCEC) in Istanbul, Erdogan said “unfair and unlawful practices against the Muslim Turkish minority in Greece continue increasingly.”

“The religious leaders of our brothers in Greece are not recognised, their foundations and property are seized, they are not allowed to teach their mother tongue, and their identities are denied,” Erdogan said.

“We must not remain silent to Athens’ [abuses].”

Turkish President Erdogan. Photo: @RTErdogan Twitter.

Erdogan’s comments come amid rising tensions between Turkey and Greece in recent months over a number of issues including gas exploration in the east Mediterranean and immigration.

In September, the Turkish President accused Greece of illegal pushbacks and of pursuing a policy of “political repression and discrimination” against its Muslim community.

At the time, Greece’s Foreign Minister, Nikos Dendias, responded to Erdogan’s comments and said “Turkey has no right to speak.”

“Greece is a European country that absolutely respects human rights and, of course, the rights of its Muslim community,” Dendias said.

Source: Ekathimerini.

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