The Syriac community in Turkey is grateful for a pledge that church properties appropriated by the state will be returned to the community.
On 22nd November 2017 deputy prime minister Hakan Cavusoglu, while speaking to the Anatolian News Agency, stated that the appropriation of over a hundred church properties in Mardin province had been a mistake and that property rights would be returned. The minister, however, refrained from giving any further details.
On 23rd June 2017 the media outlet Agos had reported that church properties had been appropriated by the State Treasury and assigned to the Directorate for Religious Affairs. The church and monastery foundations had not been notified of these appropriations.
Following complaints, the governor of Mardin established a commission to deal with the issue and the handover of buildings to the Directorate of Religious Affairs was halted. However, the title deeds remained with the State Treasury.
MAY BE CIRCULATED TO GENERAL MAILING LISTS, OUTSIDE ORGANISATIONS, AND QUOTED FROM FREELY IN REPORTS CITING “MIDDLE EAST CONCERN” AS THE SOURCE OF THE INFORMATION.
Christians in Turkey are thankful for the deputy prime minister’s pledge, but request prayer that the properties will soon be returned to the Syriac community in Mardin.