Nobody should interfere with others’ lifestyle: Erdoğan
DHA photoTurkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan said on Jan. 4 that “nobody should be forced to have the same kind of lifestyle” as someone else.
“Just as it is wrong for people who cannot tolerate the call to prayer to trample on a preacher, it is wrong to use force against those who do not pray. Just as we did not consent to the things done against our daughters who were not allowed to enter schools because of their headscarves, today we will show the same attitude if the opposite action takes place,” said Erdoğan at his 33rd meeting with local neighborhood heads (muhtars) at the presidential palace in Ankara.
He also stated that he was “against minority oppression targeting the majority, just as [he is] against the majority oppressing the minority.”
“I’ve spent my life fighting against those who wanted to turn Turkey into a country where one group tries to dominate over all others,” Erdoğan said.
“Nobody, either in the world or in our country, should be forced to have the same lifestyle,” he added.
The president also referred to various comments he has made about images and statements that he does not approve of, saying these comments came within his “individual freedom of expression.”
“I never resorted to a way that would be regarded as an intervention into people’s lifestyles by using the public position I represent,” Erdoğan said.
In the same speech, he also touched upon Turkey’s ongoing fight against terrorism, claiming that Turkey’s regional policies aimed at guaranteeing its security could not be regarded as “interventions into the domestic affairs of another state.” Those who claim the latter show that they “do not understand anything from what is going on,” he added.
Accusing Turkey of supporting the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL) is “the same rhetoric that is desired by those who attack Turkey via these groups,” Erdoğan also claimed.