Kılıçdaroğlu to boycott ‘politicized’ Rumi events

Kılıçdaroğlu to boycott ‘politicized’ Rumi events

Kılıçdaroğlu to boycott ‘politicized’ Rumi events

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Main opposition Republican People’s Party (CHP) leader Kemal Kılıçdaroğlu has vowed not attend ceremonies held each year in the Central Anatolian city of Konya in honor of Mevlana Jalaladdin Rumi, on the grounds that government officials have "politicized" the ceremonies.

“Mevlana’s soul has never been hurt so much. I will not come to the Şeb-i Arus [The night of reunion] ceremony again,” Kılıçdaroğlu reportedly said on Dec. 18.

The CHP head recalled speeches by Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan; Mehmet Görmez, the head of Religious Affairs Directorate (Diyanet); and another Islamic scholar, Tuğrul İnançer, during the ceremonies marking Rumi, saying all these speeches politicized.

“There was everything but Mevlana in the speeches. You must not engage in so much disrespect to Mevlana. When you are filled with hatred and ambition, then your values disappear and you lose your temper. You cannot respect anything. I saw all these in Erdoğan’s speech during [the Rumi] ceremony, it was all political,” Kılıçdaroğlu said.

“Görmez criticized humanism in his speech. First of all, Mevlana himself is about humanism, the love of human beings. This is an eclipse of reason. Some thoughts are being forced on the public,” he added.

The CHP leader also criticized the audience who attended the ceremony, saying the number of those who came to applaud Erdoğan was more than the number marking Rumi.

“After a while, those who were brought in [simply to applaud for Erdoğan] left the hall. The rest of the audience who came for Mevlana was low in number,” Kılıçdaroğlu said.