Mosque arson attack in Greek Cyprus condemned

2nd Jun 2020
Mosque arson attack in Greek Cyprus condemned

AA, Cyprium News, ABTTF: The Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus (TRNC) on Monday condemned an attempt to burn down a mosque in Greek Cyprus.

The attack with Molotov cocktails on Koprulu Haci Ibrahim Aga Mosque in the Limassol province on Sunday is unacceptable, said TRNC Prime Minister Ersin Tatar in a statement.

At least three petrol bombs were hurled at the mosque on Monday, he said.

“We are sad to see that even with the [coronavirus] pandemic, there are some in Greek Cyprus who await opportunities to attack foreigners, specifically Muslims, and their prayer sites,” Tatar said.

He called on Greek Cypriot authorities to catch the perpetrators.

“The Greek Cypriot administration and public should know that racist and Islamophobic approaches will bring no good. Those who turn the other way in the face of this will suffer the most harm,” he added.Turkey on Monday condemned an attempt to burn down a mosque in Greek Cyprus.

The top religious authority in Northern Cyprus also said they deeply regretted the attack, condemning all kinds of xenophobic and Islamophobic attacks.

Turkey also condemned the attack on the mosque.

“We condemn the heinous attack on Koprulu Haci Ibrahim Aga Mosque in Greek Cyprus, Limassol province,” said Turkey’s Foreign Ministry in a statement.

“The Greek Cypriot administration should take the necessary steps in line with freedom of prayer and holiness of prayer sites, and they should catch the perpetrators.

“It is plain as day that anti-Muslim rhetoric and actions will not benefit efforts to solve the Cyprus issue.”

Such attacks not only target Muslims, but pose a common threat to all humanity, the statement added.

There is not a single mosque in Athens right now as all of them have been destroyed, Turkey’s leader said Sunday.

“Not a single mosque of ours still stands in Athens. They were all razed to the ground. But we did not resort to such ways in a city like Istanbul,” said President Recep Tayyip Erdogan, referring to the 567th anniversary of the conquest of city, which was marked on May 29.

“Our mosques and symbolic monuments in places where we had to leave a century ago were destroyed in a short time.”

Meanwhile, a fountain in the village of Nimfea (Yanıköy) in Komotini, Greece, which was built by a philanthropist belonging to the Turkish community in Western Thrace, was damaged by unidentified persons. According to the newspaper Gündem, the fountain plate written in Turkish was removed on 12 May and a slogan against the Turks was written with spray paint on the fountain.

While shattering the marble plate where the name of the benevolent Western Thrace Turk who built the fountain and the construction date were shown, the persons wrote the slogan “Erdoğan Turks Nazi” on the fountain wall.

The Federation of Western Thrace Turks in Europe (ABTTF) “strongly condemned this abominable hate-motivated and racist attack which bears motifs of enmity against Turks and is clearly targeting the Turkish community in Western Thrace, and we want the perpetrator to be identified immediately by the police and brought to justice.”

[Photo: Koprulu Haci Ibhrahim Aga Mosque is situated in the Cami-Cedid mahalle (neighborhood) of Limassol. Bağışkan, Tuncer. Ottoman, Islamic and Islamised monuments in Cyprus, 287-293. Nicosia, Cyprus: Cyprus Turkish Education Foundation]

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