Cemevi, mosque to be built side by side in Turkey's Ankara funded by Gülen movement
ISTANBUL – Doğan News Agency
A cemevi and a mosque will be side by side in Ankara, İzzettin Doğan (R) says. DHA photoAn Alevi cemevi, a Sunni mosque and a public soup kitchen will be constructed side by side next week in Ankara with financing from Turkish Islamic scholar Fethullah Gülen’s movement, according to the chairman of the Cem Foundation, İzzettin Doğan.
Doğan said Gülen had proposed to him via a mutual friend to build a mosque and cemevi side by side in one garden, adding that they had responded positively to the proposal.
“Why shouldn’t we accept it? After all, in our perception of Islam, a space [for worshipping] is the heart of a person,” said Doğan, adding that the state’s perception of not accepting any other worship place other than a mosque was “without rhyme or reason.”
The construction of the two buildings will start in Ankara on Sept. 8 and all will be financed by the Gülen Movement.
“In order to establish an Alevi-Sunni convergence, we will bring together a mosque and a cemevi in the same garden in Ankara,” said Doğan at a Belief Leaders Meeting on Aug. 31. “[The Gülen movement] will cover all the expenses; they will construct the mosque, cemevi and also the soup kitchen.”
Gülen had said on June 19 via his website that mosques and cemevis may be constructed side by side in some regions, and that Sunnis and Alevis needed to have common places for use such as parks.
Doğan said their one condition on the construction of the places of worship was that a soup kitchen also be included.
The Cem Foundation leader said the cornerstones for the mosque, cemevi, soup kitchen and garden would be laid in Ankara on Sept. 8.