Alevi house of worship set on fire, association
ISTANBUL- Hürriyet Daily News
Ali Kenanoğlu, Chairman of Hubyar Alevi associa.Arsonists attempted to set fire to a cemevi (Alevi house of worship) in Istanbul’s Kartal district, a day after the homes of 25 Alevi families were marked by unknown people in the same neighborhood, an Alevi association has claimed.
Ali Kenanoğlu, the chairman of the Hubyar Sultan Alevi Cultural Association, said the tables, chairs and other goods in the garden of the cemevi were set on fire Aug. 24 at around 4 a.m. The fire was put out by firefighters before it reached the inside of the cemevi.
“The fire was put out by chance after a local resident saw it. Apparently, he called the firefighters and they prevented the fire from spreading inside the cemevi. The Alevis are clearly threatened, and with impunity now. We want the perpetrators to be found as soon as possible,” Kenanoğlu said.
The houses of 25 Alevi families were marked the day before in the same Kurfalı neighborhood of the Kartal district of Istanbul, Kenanoğlu said.
Attacks on Alevis have risen in recent months in Turkey.
On July 26, the home of an Alevi family was stoned and their stables burned down by an angry mob of around 100 people in the southeastern province of Malatya, after Hasan Hüseyin Evli allegedly told a Ramadan drummer not to wake them for sahur, the meal before sunrise. Another member of the Evli family, Servet Evli, claimed that pressure and threats directed at them were continuing in the neighborhood.
On the night of Aug. 16, the property of an Alevi family in the Sürgü distrcit of Malatya was also reportedly vandalized. Local resident Cemal Mazıcı’s car tires were slashed, and slogans such as “Death to Alevis” were written on his car.