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POLITICS > I will not return, says Gülen

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Gulen's personal video showed him tearing up.

Gulen's personal video showed him tearing up.

Islamic scholar Fethullah Gülen has rejected Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdoğan’s call for him to return to Turkey on the grounds that it could risk many of the achievements his movement has made.

"Destiny led me to a path away from surrendering, so I walked down that path and never thought of surrendering," Gülen said in a length response to Erdoğan. "I don't want to harm the cause by coming back.”

He also said previous leaders had also invited him to end his long, self-imposed exile in the United States. "President [Abdullah] Gül also said it before, in the open or through mediation. Other statesmen also called on me to return. They asked me if it wasn't time I came back," Gülen added.

"They do what suits them. The nation may look to them to call me back, and I assume the prime minister sensed a demand from the people when the applause at the Turkish Olympiad got too loud," Gülen added.

"I can't go unless they invite me first," Gülen said. "Turkey is not a safe, secure place; I will be getting myself in trouble."

Gülen also spoke of his previous convictions, saying he never complained of his jailings, other than his six years as a fugitive following the Sept. 12, 1980, coup.

Gülen said he would not want to risk the cause he committed himself to by coming back to Turkey.

"If there is a one in a hundred chance that there will be problems in Turkey, that unrest will arise, that some gains will be lost again, I wouldn't want to go back with these worries," Gülen said.

"If the positive course in Turkey will be hindered by my return, I prefer to live my remaining days here," Gülen added.

While speaking at the closing ceremony of the Turkish Olympiad on June 14, Erdoğan made a thinly disguised call for Gülen to return to Turkey without using the religious scholar’s name.

June/16/2012

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Ex Patriot

6/17/2012 6:46:39 PM

What importance has this man got that every Turk wants him back into the main land ?

Thessalonian

6/17/2012 4:21:37 PM

Why would he give up his personal and political freedom and human rights to return to Turkey? An excellent point raised alike by many posters below. I concur...Regards

Köksüz Kosmopolit

6/17/2012 3:51:49 PM

If, some day, Turkey once again has a government whose allegiance is to the Republic and its ideals, Gülen might find himself returning to Turkey involuntarily, on foot of an extradition request.

Zouqul H. Chowdhury Zouk

6/17/2012 11:17:57 AM

It is a wise decision of Gulen not to go back to Turkey now. If he goes back to Turkey, he will be seriously involved in Turkish politics. That will put a lot of stress on his current weak health. Further, he is now an international citizen advancing the Turkish culture all over the world. When Agha Khan was offered the presidency of Pakistan after the death of Jinnah, Agha Khan politely refused that offer stating that he did not want to relinquish his international status.

Blue Dotterel

6/17/2012 11:01:38 AM

Turkey's Khomeni, waiting in a "friendly" Western country for the right moment to return.

adam orman

6/17/2012 2:13:48 AM

Fethullah Gulen is a student of Said Nursi (a late Ottoman era Islamist and a trouble maker during early Republic years) and a radical Islamist who promotes a Neo-Ottoman Islamist-Jihadist-Sharia dictatorship and in a state of rebellion with the Democratic Republic of Turkiye. His purpose in life is to defend orthodox Islam against the forces of secularism in Turkiye. He is living in self-imposed exile in Pennsylvania, USA.

Ex Patriot

6/17/2012 1:37:41 AM

Biggest problem in Turkey is IGNORANCE !

Osman Ozturk

6/17/2012 1:09:26 AM

Fethullah , stay in America, you're not welcome in Turkiye.

Agnes Smith

6/16/2012 9:49:15 PM

PM sure knows how to distract the TK public from the most pressing issues - And is this a rejection from Gulen? How will he live that down?

sam stevens

6/16/2012 5:58:01 PM

Why on earth would the man want to give up his freedom in a true democracy to be constantly looking over his shoulder in Turkey ? Wise man, he knows the powers that be cannot be trusted.
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