Erdoğan criticizes Saudi Crown Prince’s ‘moderate Islam’ pledge
“Islam cannot be either ‘moderate’ or ‘not moderate.’ Islam can only be one thing,” Erdoğan said in a speech at a program hosted in Ankara by the Organization of Islamic Cooperation (OIC) on women’s entrepreneurship on Nov. 9.
“Perhaps the person voicing this concept thinks it belongs to him. No, it does not belong to you,” he added, noting that he was “asked about ‘moderate Islam’ at meetings in the European Parliament many years ago.”
“They are now trying to pump up this idea again. What they really want to do is weaken Islam ... We don’t want people to learn about religion from foreign facts,” Erdoğan said, also criticizing the previous practice banning women from driving in Saudi Arabia. The ban was recently lifted with an order from King Salman requesting that driving licenses be issued to women.
“Saudi was not like it is today before 1979. Saudi Arabia and the entire region went through a religious revival after 1979 ... But now all we will do is go back to what we were: A moderate Islam that is open to all religions, to the world, and to all traditions and people,” he said.
Meanwhile, President Erdoğan also blasted the OIC for “obstructing” certain plans that Turkey wants to implement to support women’s rights within the OIC.
“Turkey proposes a women’s platform within the OIC but some leaders of the organization do not agree,” he added.