Turkish institute head sacked for Holocaust comparison

June 26th, 2008 - 11:16 pm ICT by IANS  

DPA
Berlin, June 26 (DPA) A German institute of Turkish studies sacked its Turkish-born director Thursday after he said Turks in Germany and other European countries suffered discrimination similar to that suffered by the Jews in the Holocaust. The Essen-based Centre for Turkish Studies, which is funded by the state of North Rhine-Westphalia, said it had decided to sack Faruk Sen for the comment and for previous remarks that presented a distorted picture of relations between Turks and Germans in Germany.

Sen had contributed to polarization, rather than integration, the institute’s central aim, it said.

Sen, who has led the well-known institute since its founding in 1985, said he would launch a legal appeal.

Speaking to the German daily Tageszeitung from Istanbul, he described the decision as an “overreaction by the executive” in remarks to be published Friday.

More than a month ago, Sen compared discrimination against Turks in Western Europe with the persecution of the Jews by Germany during World War II in an article in the Turkish newspaper Referans.

He subsequently distanced himself from the remarks and apologized.
DPA

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