Protesters Demand Head of Religious Affairs’ Dismissal

Protestors demand dismisal of Unsal
[Protestors demand dismissal of Prof. Ahmet Ünsal]
Friday, 27 January 2023

Activists from 39 organisations, including political parties held a demonstration to demand the dismissal of the head of Religious Affairs Professor Ahmet Ünsal, Yeniduzen reports.

 Ünsal caused outrage among many, following reports of a talk he gave to young women at a mosque, lecturing them on their obligations as women in society and in marriage. His speech was described as reactionary, anti-feminist and outdated.

Police took extensive security measures, while protestors called for Ünsal’s dismissal.

A matter of particular sensitivity was the murder three days ago of a 16-year-old schoolgirl by a 21-year-old man in Iskele.

A woman among the activists burst into tears, pointing to the murder of 16-year-old Zehie Helin Reessur in Iskele and how it was reported in the press, saying, “We want to raise children in a free society, we want to live upright. The situation is not good“.

The speech was interrupted by slogans such as “We will stop male violence”, “We don’t want bigots in Cyprus”.

The action continued with the slogans of “women, life, freedom” and “This country is ours, let’s rule it”.

It was noteworthy that many police officers took part in the action.

Council of Ministers

Reportedly there have been mixed messages from the Council of Minister which stated it would launch an investigation into Ünsal’s speech, However, it was said that one member of the council admitted that no action had been taken.

A joint statement issued by the protester said, “The inconsistent rhetoric of the state officials as if to make fun of the society is also an indication that they are not sufficient to take a step in this regard“.


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