Row grows over Turkish singer’s remarks likening ISIL militants and those who sacrifice animals
DHA PhotoA Turkish singer’s remarks in which she likened the Islamic State of Iraq and Levant (ISIL) militants who behead people to people who sacrifice animals have created controversy in the country during Eid al-Adha.
“According to me, ISIL and those who put a knife to an innocent animal’s throat are at the same emotional level. ISIL doesn’t surprise me,” Leman Sam, a prominent figure in the Turkish indie pop music scene, wrote on Twitter.
Sam took to Twitter to respond to the criticism, tweeting that sacrifices have existed since the pre-Islamic era.
“You uneducated [people], sacrifices also existed in pagan religions when there was no Islam. It is not only part of Islam. You’re waiting to attack like vultures. Smarten up,” she wrote.
“I am ashamed of being the same kind as you. You are deluded, uneducated and decayed. I cannot even be mad at you,” she added.
Many people, including Deputy Prime Minister Bülent Arınç, reacted against the singer’s remarks, with Arınç condemning Sam as “miserable.”
“A Muslim knows what the sacrifice is, the story of the Prophet Abraham and the rest of it. I condemn this miserable person who put the sacrifice and the deeds done by those who cannot be deemed as human, who are a group of executioners that we cannot call Muslims, together. It is sad,” Arınç said Oct. 5 while addressing Justice and Development Party (AKP) supporters during a rally in Bursa.
Arınç recalled President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan’s previous remarks about a lawmaker who threw stones at military forces during clashes on the Syrian border, saying there was a “level of politeness” that should be observed.
“Of course, there are such confused people in every society. We don’t intend to discard them, but how can someone say this to a believing society? … She doesn’t intend to apologize, but we will apologize in her name to everyone who performed this worship thanks to Allah,” Arınç said.
AKP Antalya lawmaker Gökçen Özdoğan Enç also slammed Sam’s words, urging the singer to respect religious values and beliefs.