News Local West wants to relaunch Crusades, Erdogan claims over Prophet cartoons

West wants to relaunch Crusades, Erdogan claims over Prophet cartoons

 

 Turkey’s leader said that Western countries mocking Islam wanted to “relaunch the Crusades”, heightening a confrontation with France over cartoons of the Prophet Mohammad that have stirred anger in Muslim-majority countries.

In a speech to lawmakers of his AK Party in parliament, President Tayyip Erdogan also said that standing against attacks on the Prophet was “an issue of honour for us”, suggesting Ankara may be digging in for a prolonged standoff.

The row with France flared after a French teacher who showed pupils cartoons of the Prophet published in the French satirical weekly Charlie Hebdo was beheaded in France this month. The caricatures are considered blasphemous by Muslims.

In a sign of spreading anger at France’s defence of the right to publish the cartoons, demonstrators denounced France in street protests in several Muslim-majority countries.

“France down, it insulted our Prophet,” shouted protesters in the Somali capital Mogadishu.

Erdogan sharply criticised Macron at the weekend, saying the French leader needed a mental health check, prompting France to recall its ambassador from Ankara. On Monday, Erdogan urged a boycott of French products.

The Turkish leader again questioned Macron’s state of mind on Wednesday and, in remarks addressed to “the West”, described colonial powers as “murderers” for their record in Africa and the Middle east.

“They literally want to relaunch the Crusades, Erdogan said.

‘Since the Crusades, the seeds of evil and hatred have started falling on these (Muslim) lands and that’s when peace was disrupted.”

Turkish officials said separately Ankara would take legal and diplomatic steps in response to a caricature of Erdogan in Charlie Hebdo, which officials called a “disgusting effort” to “spread its cultural racism and hatred”.

The cartoon on the cover of Charlie Hebdo showed Erdogan sitting in a white t-shirt and underpants, holding a canned drink and lifting the skirt of a woman wearing an Islamic hijab to reveal her naked bottom.

“Our battle against these rude, ill-intentioned and insulting steps will continue until the end, with reason but determination,” Turkey’s Communications Directorate said.

State media reported that Turkish prosecutors had launched an investigation into Charlie Hebdo’s executives.

The row has its roots in a knife attack outside a French school on Oct. 16 in which a man of Chechen origin beheaded Samuel Paty, a teacher who had shown pupils cartoons of the Prophet in a civics lesson.

The French government, backed by many citizens, saw the beheading as an attack on freedom of speech, and said it would defend the right to display the cartoons.

Macron has said he would redouble efforts to stop conservative Islamic beliefs subverting French values.

France’s foreign ministry on Tuesday issued safety advice to French citizens in Indonesia, Turkey, Bangladesh, Iraq and Mauritania, advising them to exercise caution. They should stay away from any protests over the cartoons and avoid any public gatherings.

In Dhaka, hundreds of Bangladeshi Muslims took to the streets of the capital for a third consecutive day of protests, chanting slogans such as ‘Boycott French products’ and burning effigies of Macron, who they described as an enemy of Islam.

Top Stories

New covid cases under 200 today, number of hospitalised rising

  The health ministry announced 152 new cases of covid-19 over the past 24 hours, 11 of which were confirmed by PCR following an initial...

Central Bank Governor tests positive for covid

  Central Bank governor Constandinos Herodotou has tested positive for covid-19 and will self-isolate at home where he will continue his duties. Herodotou announced the positive...

Britain expects “very significant” week for Brexit talks as clock ticks down

  Britain and the European Union are heading into a “very significant” week, British foreign minister Dominic Raab said, as talks over a trade deal...

No restrictions to and from Limassol and Paphos as of midnight

  Authorities are suspending movement restrictions to and from Limassol and Paphos as of midnight in line with the new health ministry directives announced on...

Iran to give a ‘calculated’ response to nuclear scientist killing, says official

  Iran will give a “calculated and decisive” response to the killing of its top nuclear scientist, said a top adviser to Iran’s supreme leader,...

Taste

Squash soup

Ingredients: 1 kg pumpkin, cut into small cubes, approximately 5 cups 2 medium (400g) sweet potatoes, cut into cubes, approximately 2 ½ cups 1 chopped leek, only...

Mezedes

No visit to Cyprus is complete without enjoying the traditional meal of many small dishes known as ‘meze’. This large feast, which has been a...

Prawns with fried cheese, barley shaped pasta

Put the barley shaped pasta into a small pan with salted water, bring to a boil and when tender, drain. Peal the prawns leaving...

Salmon and shrimp sheftalies

Mix all ingredients for tabbouli in a bowl and keep to one side so flavours can combine. Prepare the sheftalies: wash and soak the casing...