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1. EU ‘no’ to Turkey will be perceived as ‘no’ to Islam
[By Anwar Ibrahim, TURKS.us, Monday ,June 25 2007]

 Former Deputy Prime Minister of Malaysia Anwar Ibrahim, an inspirational figure for many Muslims in Southeast Asia, said a possible rejection of Turkey's bid to join the EU will be perceived by Muslims all over the world as a "no" to Islam. After a fierce political spat with his mentor Mahathir Muhammad in 1998, Ibrahim spent six years in solitary confinement and was only released in 2004. Attending a conference on "Islam and democracy: does it work? Perspectives from South-East Asia" as the keynote speaker in Brussels, Ibrahim, in an exclusive interview with Today's Zaman, warned the EU about the possible fallout throughout the Muslim world of refusing Turkey.

 

2. An Interview with Riva Kastoryano
[By Islamonline Newsletter(27th September,2008)]

 European conceptions of Islam vis-à-vis Turkey's candidacy within
the European Union
By Jennifer Selby
On July 26, 2008 I had the opportunity to sit down with Riva Kastoryano in her office in Paris to discuss her work with Turkish migrants in France and Germany, and more broadly, her thoughts on recent debates on Islam, the "West" and secularism related to Turkey's European Union candidacy. Dr. Kastoryano is the author of dozens of key publications on immigration, identity, and religion in Europe. Her book, La France, l'Allemagne et leurs immigrés. Négocier l'identité (Paris, Armand Colin, 1997) was translated into English and published by Princeton UP. Her other book, Etre Turc en France. Réflexions sur familles et communauté (Paris, L'Harmatan, 1986) reflects her earlier work on Turks in France. Most recently, she has edited Quelle identité pour l'Europe? Le multiculturalisme

   
 

3.  Turkey
[By U.S. Library of Congress]

Religion: More than 99 percent of the population is Muslim, mostly Sunni. Christianity (Greek Orthodox and Armenian Apostolic) and Judaism are the other religions in practice, but the non-Muslim population declined in the early 2000s. Beginning in the 1980s, the role of religion in the state has been a divisive issue, as influential factions challenged the complete secularization called for by Kemalism and the observance of Islamic practices experienced a substantial revival. In the early 2000s, Islamic groups challenged the concept of the secular state with increasing vigor after the Erdoğan government had calmed the issue in 2003. The Alevi community, a group of non-orthodox Muslims that make up 10–25 percent of the population, has suffered discrimination and occasional massacres. In 2008 the Directorate of Religious Affairs (the government agency that oversees all religious activities in Turkey) proposed establishment of an international faculty of theology, to promote understanding among religions and cultures in Turkey and to improve the understanding of Islam overseas.

 

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