Untitled Document
Anniversary of the Rights March 01.08.2017-14:36
Press release from FEP Party President Mustafa Ali Cavus.
Our Honourable People,

A year ago, during the death anniversary of late leader Dr. Sadik Ahmet before the commemoration event and Rights March was organised. For the first time after 28 years, we collectively voiced the injustices we were subjected to.

The 24th July is the date the Lausanne Treaty was signed and we were entrusted to our country Greece as a minority. Also it is the date late leader Dr. Sadik Ahmet, who dedicated his life to search for the rights of the Western Thrace Turkish Minority. Therefore, on this meaningful day we demanded our rights and demanded solutions to the injustices we are faced with.

Europe heard our voices, but our country Greece with its ears closed did not hear our cries. We said we wanted to be happy as citizens of this country. For this, recognize our identity and within this framework return the official identity of our historic associations which bear our identity in their name, implement decisions from the European Court of Human Rights in this regard and allow for newly opened associations to use Turkish in their titles.

We requested our education rights; bilingual Turkish – Greek educating minority kindergartens, new minority schools to meet needs and for our minority schools not be closed under the pretext of lack of children numbers. We also wanted our foundations and their administration to be left to the freewill of minority people.

We demanded that the elected muftis be officially recognised and our people have the right to freely choose their own imams and that the ‘240 Imam Act’ be abolished. We also wanted for the youth not to leave the region and for public employment doors to be opened to our educated people for our region’s dynamism.

As a political party, we requested for the antidemocratic 3% threshold applied to independent MPs to be cancelled and that everyone be entitled to representation. We expressed that Dr. Sadik Ahmet’s vehicle in which he had an accident and lost his life which was stolen from the FEP Party Headquarters be found and returned and for those who attacked our party be caught and brought to justice.

We stated our opposition to teachers and students being prevented from using our mother tongue in minority schools and demanded that the economic and quality of life gulf between the majority and minority be eliminated.

We sincerely voiced that we want to live as happy citizens of our country Greece with equal citizenship rights, to defend this country in every field like our grandfathers and to act together to serve our country for its perpetuity.

We voiced aloud our longing for the government to initiate a process of sincere dialogue with minority institutions in order to resolve the long standing minority’s problems.
A year has passed since this civilized and peaceful march. Did our country Greece hear these sincere cries? Did it hear and take steps towards resolving these demands? No.
Our country Greece, did not even take into consideration these innocent requests and demands. It ignored the sincere approach of people who do not wish for anything other than to serve this country. But rather put the State put pressure on minority leaders through the judicial system, also malicious media editors produced slander, without any validity, to create false perceptions. As never before in history, inquires were launched into minority institutions presidents and mayors. However, in the case of satisfying these demands which are possible to be solved quickly in good faith, the minority’s sense of belonging and love for this country will strengthen and increase. The judiciary pressure and marginalisation of minority members has not served the democracy of the country nor the happiness or our people. In short, neither the minority nor our country benefits.

Despite this attitude, we will never lose hope. We will make our voice heard and reach many channels through the ways and means in politics. We will patiently walk the path lighted by our late leader Dr. Sadik Ahmet. On this occasion, on the death anniversary of our leader Dr. Sadik Ahmet I remember him with thankfulness, longing and compassion. May he rest in peace. I would like all our people to know that we will continue our cooperative struggle until we gain our rights without fear. I greet all our people with these feelings and thoughts.

Best regards,
Mustafa Ali Cavus
FEP Party President
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