Crosses on Alevi doors ‘child’s play,’ minister says

Crosses on Alevi doors ‘child’s play,’ minister says

Crosses on Alevi doors ‘child’s play,’ minister says

An Alevi citizen points to the sign crossed in front of his door. Minister Şahin says children drew the signs since their height is at the point where a child can reach. DHA photo

Markings that were found on the doors of Alevis’ houses in the eastern province of Adıyaman are mere “child’s play” and not a premonition of an attack, Interior Minister İdris Naim Şahin has said.

“You may ask how the police reached the conclusion that some children drew those signs, but the signs’ height is at the point where a child can reach. There is no need to exaggerate the incident, some Sunni family houses were also marked, not just Alevis’ [houses], according to the investigation we launched,” Şahin said.

But Republican People’s Party (CHP) deputy Sabahat Akkiray said the government had the responsibility to protect Alevis.

“They are frightened and waiting in turns night and day. Alevis have been through several massacres in recent history of the country. A new massacre, possibility like [past] ones in Kahramanmaraş, Sivas or Çorum, is on their minds,” Akkiray said.

Akkiray, a famous Alevi singer-turned-deputy who goes by the stage name of Sabahat Akkiraz, called on the government to take necessary precautions before any attacks.

Meanwhile, Deputy Prime Minister Bekir Bozdağ commented on the incident, saying, “Whoever committed this atrociousness, I condemn it.”

Bozdağ also said this could be part of an “evil game.”

Celal Dinçer, a CHP deputy, said Turkey was familiar with such conspiracies.

“We saw the same in the provinces of Erzincan, Kahramanmaraş and Sivas. We have to take seriously what happened in Adıyaman – we cannot evaluate it as ‘child’s play.’ The tension in Turkey is increasing. Some dark forces may try to create turmoil in Turkey. I am calling on the prosecutors and the local authorities to do their duties and reveal the actors of the incident,” Dinçer said.

The doors of a number of houses belonging to members of the Alevi community in Adıyaman were marked with crosses by unknown people, CHP deputy Hüseyin Aygün announced on his Facebook account on Feb 29.

A similar method was used to mark the houses of Alevis prior to the Maraş Massacre of 1978, in which at least 105 people were killed.