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"Even sexton cannot be appointed to churches while muftis are appointed in Greece" elected Mufti says

07:14 08 August 2022 Author :  

Greece hastily enacted the law to appoint a puppet mufti, ignoring the Muslim Turkish minority of Western Thrace.

The Athens administration, which has made a name for itself in recent days with its human rights violations and attitudes against international law, has again signed a scandalous event.

"Athens does not have the right to appoint a sexton for the church, but it will appoint a mufti to Muslims," said Ibrahim Sharif, the popularly elected Mufti of Komotini.

Saying that there may be Christians among the committee that will appoint the mufti, “With this law, which is contrary to international agreements, the rights of the Turks of Western Thrace are trampled on.” Şerif said.

The Greek Parliament enacted the law authorizing "appointing muftis" on August 2, without consulting the Muslim Turkish minority in Western Thrace. Athens, which has not fulfilled its international obligations that guarantee the rights of the Turkish minority in Greece, especially the Treaty of Lausanne, aims to transform the mufti institution into a public office affiliated with the Greek state. The bill, which was presented to the parliament immediately after the death of the elected mufti of Xanthi Ahmet Mete, entered into force hastily in the form of a bag draft. Sharing the details on the subject, "Athens, which cannot appoint a sexton, is trying to appoint a mufti to the Muslims." the mufti of Komotini, İbrahim Şerif, who was elected by the people, said.


Stating that the rights of Muslims on the borders of Greece were first secured with the Athens Peace Treaty in 1913, Şerif said, “Just as the Greeks lived in Istanbul, the Muslims in Western Thrace would live in the same way. Later, these rights were re-assured in Lausanne. Today's muftis are the equivalent of metropolitans (religious leaders with legal rights) in Christianity. The requirements of the agreements were often not implemented by the Athens administration,” he said. Stating that Athens started to impose these impositions by ignoring international agreements in 1985, he said, “In 1985, the first regent was appointed. In 1990, the Athenian government imposed the imposition of "this is your mufti" for the appointed regent.


Stating that Athens began to weaken the power of the mufti in the 90s and to empty the office, Şerif said, “Muslim people used to apply to the mufti in legal situations such as marriage, divorce, inheritance sharing, and child custody sharing. With the law passed a few years ago, Greece is trying to interfere with the life of the minority and the sociological structure here. According to the law, the mufti will be able to handle marriage and divorce proceedings, but since they are in the status of a judge, only muftis appointed by Greece will do this.


Stating that the rights and values of minorities will be abused through the appointed puppet mufti, Şerif said, “The so-called mufti is under the Ministry of National Education and Religious Affairs of Greece. He makes the appointment as follows: The Ministry will determine a committee of 10 people. In this delegation, which may also include Christians, there will be at least two Muslims among the imams appointed by him with the '240 Imam Law'. This delegation will send it to the ministry after examining 20 people chosen by it and 10 people selected by lot. Ultimately, the Athenian administration will be able to appoint any of these people as mufti. The law stipulates that the expenses of the mufti to be appointed should be covered by the minority associations, not the state budget. We were going to look after the mufti they appointed".


Stating that with the '240 Imams Law', which was enacted 8 years ago, only mufti would be elected from among the imams appointed by Greece, Şerif said, "They would appoint 240 people to be appointed in schools and Quran courses and pay their salaries. Among these people who were hired as clergy to teach Muslim Turkish students the religion of Islam in Greek, there were also people who did not have religious knowledge, and we objected at that time. Later, they did not make these appointments. It is thought that the mufti to be elected may be among them.”


Mufti offices were demoted to the level of General Directorate under the Greek Ministry of Education and Religious Affairs.

Immovable properties belonging to foundations established by minorities in the region are being abused. With the law, the Athenian administration will be able to confiscate foundation properties and use them for the construction of a mufti.

By law, the only language that the mufti will use in correspondence will be Greek. No translation will be made unless deemed necessary.

Foundations belonging to minorities will meet the accommodation problem of the appointed muftis./

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