POLITICS > Jihad not related to terrorism, Turkish FM Davutoğlu says

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‘For us, jihad is a sacred notion; let us not taint this notion by using it like neocons
and pro-Israelis in America,’ Turkish FM Ahmet Davutoğlu says. AA photo

‘For us, jihad is a sacred notion; let us not taint this notion by using it like neocons and pro-Israelis in America,’ Turkish FM Ahmet Davutoğlu says. AA photo

Erdem Güneş Erdem Güneş erdem.gunes@hdn.com.tr

There is no connection between jihad and terrorism, Turkish Foreign Minister Ahmet Davutoğlu said yesterday, adding that suggestions to the contrary come from American neo-cons and Israelis.

“Jihad is the name of fighting for our honor if required but firstly it means fighting against our own self’s limits, according to us,” Davutoğlu said yesterday in Istanbul at the headquarters of the Independent Industrialists’ and Businessmen’s Association (MÜSİAD), where he attended the conference “Turkey in the light of international developments, 2013.”

“For us, jihad is a sacred notion; let us not taint this notion by using it like neo-cons and pro-Israelis in America,” Davutoğlu said while condemning an opposition party deputy who asked the Turkish government on its policy regarding the jihadist movement in Syria at a Turkey-EU Joint Parliamentary Commission meeting on Feb. 15.

Davutoğlu also criticized the particular deputy for asking question in English instead of Turkish since the session was held in the Turkish Assembly, albeit with EU officials.

 “A mentality has appeared now that is tainting these notions [of jihad]; they have introduced [this usage] into our culture, and they even use it in the Grand National Assembly of Turkey, which was founded with help that came from a jihad fatwa [during Turkey’s Liberation War],” Davutoğlu said.

Davutoğlu also told an anecdote about a Turkish diplomat named Cihad Erginay – who is Turkey’s envoy to the Czech Republic – in the wake of the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks on New York and Washington.

“His name is also jihad; the ones who greeted him in the airport were walking behind and yelled at him ‘Cihat,’ then everybody hits the deck,” Davutoğlu said, adding that this was part of the outcome of the misunderstanding of the word jihad.

Question over al-Nusra Front

Meanwhile, Aykan Erdemir, a main opposition Republican People’s Party (CHP) deputy told the Daily News on the phone yesterday that he was the one to ask Davutoğlu if Turkey considered the al-Nusra Front in Syria, which identifies itself a jihadist movement, as a terrorist organization like the U.S. and NATO do.

“It was a yes or no question; in not answering it, he called me an Orientalist, which is total defamation. Does he also blame al-Nusra for Orientalism? Do you count this organization as a terrorist organization or not, that was the question. The Turkish public must be informed about Turkey’s position,” Erdemir said.


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Notice on comments

Cem Arda

2/21/2013 9:39:55 AM

Facts? It is there everywhere, yet only for ones who would like to see. You can naively keep believing in your "facts". Labeling Quran as 'military hand book' shows degree of hatred you have towards İslam and here is the fact and it is well documented by your posts. Do you need more fact? Past of West would reveal it: full of massacres, slavery, colonialism forms of which still goes on: Racism, İslamophobia, fanatic christ monks creating breivks, menendezs, wilderses, pope benedict 16. etc.

Brit in Turkey

2/19/2013 7:00:54 PM

Roger Harding: I notice you took the second highest estimate available. Why not take the one from Opinion Research Business survey which is even higher? The body counts are much lower, so where did the rest go? And were all these killed by western troops? You are taking after the Armenians who claim x millions killed in the so-called "genocide", but cannot produce the graves of this many.

Johanna Dew

2/19/2013 5:18:24 PM

@rogier @cem..please come with facts, not wishfully suggestive thinking which is so typical for the ME bravado. I never heard of a Christian handbook for war. Yes, Confucius wrote about it, and yes, Islam has rules for it. And that was it. The total amount of people slaughtered through Jihad stands on ca. 270 275 million. Well documented!!

mara mcglothin

2/19/2013 4:11:23 PM

Exactly BRIT IN TURKEY ROGER HARDING While what you say about the past may be true, but now in the USA I don't believe I have heard of a single murder where a Catholic decided to kill a Baptist simple over their religion. Shouldn't we all learn from each others' mistakes? Iraq was about freedom not religion. No one ever speaks about the first Iraq War where the US came to the defense of Kuwait? Where was Turkey when Sadaam decided he wanted Kuwait?

Roger Harding

2/19/2013 3:26:43 PM

@ Brit in Turkey, The Lancet study's figure is nearly 700 000 excess deaths in Iraq through the end of June 2006 is based on household survey data. Leading American Universities arrive at roughly the same number. Despite the overwhelming evidence, If you want to believe only "Muslims" are capable of violence and not "Christians" or "Jews", please feel free. “The truth that makes men free is for the most part the truth which men prefer not to hear.”

Brit in Turkey

2/19/2013 2:02:42 PM

Roger Harding: "....in Iraq. Where nearly a million Iraqi civilains were slaughtered." Which version of history are you reading? I think you may find that the killing of Iraqis was by Saddam Hussein before the invasion and by fellow Muslims after the invasion. And it is still going on.

Cem Arda

2/19/2013 9:27:05 AM

"sam stevens", oh yeah besides "johanna dew", i should read pope benedict XVI (also attend his lectures in university of regensburg in germany), pope innocent III, all "hand books" of breivik, geert wilders' pieces, thilo sarrazin's "best seller", keep up with german monk jürgen fliege on sandra maischberger^s talkshow etc etc etc. end learn about the "true nature" of İslam or merely true nature of the West about "the other" such as İslam? So read Roger Harding's comment..

charles smyth

2/19/2013 12:34:46 AM

Jihad may be to fight against one's own limits as a philosophical principle. However, in the hands of Islamists it means to strap on a suicide belt so that one may kill many more than one could kill via the limitations of one's hands or a sword. Jihad is terrorism.

Roger Harding

2/18/2013 11:51:19 PM

@ Dew, Military handbook or not, Christians have done loads of killings. In the name of God. Over many centuries. All over the globe. May I also remind you the last dispicable Christian "Jihad" waged by Bible wielding Bush and Blair in Iraq. Where nearly a million Iraqi civilains were slaughtered. Both Bush and Blair are religious nuts. Iraq war for them was a calling. Jewish right wing religious nuts worked with Neo-Cons in Washington to make it happen. And "Jihad" against Iran is coming.

sam stevens

2/18/2013 9:47:16 PM

Cem Arda, you are completely wrong see Johanna Dew's comment. Breivik was acting for his own cause without the equivalent of the Koran in which it states it is the 'duty' of every muslim to further & promote Islam
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