Turkish Government Building Mosques On University Campuses

By Darren Smith, Weekend Contributor

blue-mosqueIn another sign of what formerly was a secular state that is now becoming more Islamist, the Religious Affairs Leader of Turkey, Mehmet Görmez, announced his department was constructing eighty mosques at various universities countrywide.

The Article 136 of the Turkish Constitution does provide for an official department, The Diyanet İşleri Başkanlığı, as it is known by formal name, “to execute the works concerning the beliefs, worship, and ethics of Islam, enlighten the public about their religion, and administer the sacred worshiping places.” After the dismantling of the caliphate in 1924, the department was formed.

Under Turkey’s former President Abdulla Gül who served from 2007 to August of 2014, the nation began separating from its secular practices. The latest announcement could be a sign that the government wishes to further instill Islam into the social fabric of future generations; beyond what was a long standing leaning toward separation of government and religion.

The President Gül, began his career as a staunch political Islamist while attending University.
A political party he later became a member, the Islamist Welfare Party, was banned in the 1990’s for its anti-secular practices, yet he joined a more moderate branch known as the Virtue Party.

When Gül visited the Diyanet in 2012 he is quoted as remarking:

“It is undoubtedly one of the most important duties of the Religious Affairs Directorate to teach our religion to our people in the most correct, clear and concise way and steer them away from superstition.”

It had been thirty three years since a President of Turkey made such a visit.

diyanet-logoThe Diyanet could be advancing beyond its statutory charter by blurring separation of church and state lines by constructing mosques in what is often a secular institution, the universities. Its president was quite open in declaring its intentions that would in the more secular West be considered concerning in public universities:

“There are around 20 million young people in Turkey. We would like to reach out young people. We care about the campus mosques in the city. In these mosques, youngsters will have religious workers assigned to work with them. We would like to see them grow in the spiritual sense and benefit from mosques.

We want to leave behind the times that mosques are only used during prayers and then left out completely. There are several mosques in Turkey that can set an example.”

By Darren Smith


World Bulletin

The views expressed in this posting are the author’s alone and not those of the blog, the host, or other weekend bloggers. As an open forum, weekend bloggers post independently without pre-approval or review. Content and any displays or art are solely their decision and responsibility.

35 thoughts on “Turkish Government Building Mosques On University Campuses”

  1. And then there is my brother in law who ran into problems getting a teaching job at a catholic school because his wife had been married before and having been divorced ruffled a lot of feathers, right here in the good old USA. As long as our present day interpretation of what the ‘founding fathers meant’ was freedom of AND FROM religion instead of strictly UNDER GOD then we may be alright.

  2. Isn’t the US full of wingnut politicians who would put compulsory christian prayer back in public schools and compel children to be taught creationism? What makes Turkish wingnuts more scorn-worthy?

  3. The EU should not permit Turkey to join and we need to stop sending them money. If they want to do this fine but we don’t have to support them!

  4. squeeky, pakistan has already traveled that road, and most of the islamic countries, and if you like the results then praise the Turkey downfall, that you may think is not the downfall….

  5. I don’t see anything wrong with Turkey trying to keep their predominant religion front and center at the universities. Maybe they are learning from the West what happens when religion is maneuvered out of daily life. Of course, if students go to prayers 5 times a day, as opposed to going to sex,drugs,booze,and rock and roll like American students, then college might take only four years, and the students might actually learn something. . .in addition to not racking up another year or two of student loans. . .

    Squeeky Fromm
    Girl Reporter

    1. squeeky – the entire reason for college is football and running up debt. I think expecting them to learn something is just asking too much.

  6. It’s an expansionist movement of extremism. Egypt used to be a cosmopolitan country that was a tourist destination. Now we have female journalists gang raped by mobs, and non-Muslism are being attacked. They’re even cracking down on musicians. Turkey is sliding down into extremism, too. The ME is not a very safe place for non-Muslism to live or visit anymore.


    What has come out of the ME? Medical advances? Technology? Anything??? They keep plotting agains the West and trying to expand. And that’s stifled invention and creativity. If they do succeed in destroying the West one day, medical care in the ME will slide into the Stone Age.

  7. So, there will be students who will be praying 5 times in the mosque and those who will not will be labelled as non believers/sinners, and that will create a psychological discomfort that will force those students to also pray or pretend to pray. Eventually they will decide to leave the country and the country will be left with real islamists only, and all the problems that come with it. So a future Pakistan/Afghanistan in the making.

  8. The University of Wi. has churches of several denominations. But, I don’t know if they have a mosque. It’s a good thing to have places of worship. My bride was on the board of directors of Pres House. It is an apartment building erected several years ago, attached to the Presbyterian Church on campus. It affords students a place to live away from the alcoholic and anti religion people that rule the campus currently. The Freedom From Religion left wingers hate it.

  9. The Pope is currently in Turkey, praying in mosques. Turkey took a hard downward turn and appears to be in free fall. This good hearted Pope is probably wasting his time in Turkey. I think he needs to pray to St. Jude on this issue.

  10. Arizona State University has long had a mosque attached to the university. It has been there since the ’80s. It offers religious courses but they are not accepted by the University.

  11. Hutchins command over English Language and history of religions is unmatched ! I miss his presence on this planet .

  12. I agree with Rafflaw, maybe for the first time. However, Islam demands that it should be the complete way of life, that is , every aspect of life should be governed by it, so I do not know how you will ever be able to convince its followers, that a better way exists to finally grow.

  13. “to execute the works concerning the beliefs, worship, and ethics of Islam, enlighten the public about their religion, and administer the sacred worshiping places.”

    I wonder if they will allow the following in their syllabus:

  14. Turkey is imitating Pakistan. In Pakistan it is common to have mosques in Universities and Med Schools. Guess Pakistan is Turkey’s role model, just like Pakistani Blasphemy laws are Obama’s role model. Instead of respecting the reasons why west made progress, seems like we are ready to ignore them and regress into systems that are worse. It is interesting that people who migrate to the west because they were not able to cope with those backward systems, tell us that we should be like them. Incredible!!

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