Turkey would never forcibly deport any refugee whose life could be in danger in his or her home country, Turkish interior minister said yesterday.
Speaking to Qatar’s Al-Jazeera, Süleyman Soylu pointed out that there were “more than 4 million Arabs currently living in Turkey.”
Referring to the Muslim Brotherhood-affiliated Egyptian, Mohamed Abdelhafiz Ahmed Hussein, who was deported in January back to Cairo, Soylu noted that his country had “prosecuted and convicted those who were involved in the act.” He added that Hussein’s wife was “on the way of being granted Turkish citizenship.”
Twenty-eight-year-old Hussein was among 28 people sentenced in absentia to death in July 2017 for killing Egypt’s public prosecutor in an attack that was carried earlier in the year. He was sent back to Egypt last month from Istanbul’s main Ataturk airport on arrival from Somalia for not having a visa.
On the recent reports about Turkey’s aims at “naturalizing all the opposition activists in Egypt, Syria and Iraq, the Turkish official stressed the claims were “groundless.”
“More than 51 million tourists had visited Turkey in 2019, compared to 30 million in 2016,” Soylu noted, stressing that his country was “safe.”
“We would never allow racism against anyone in Turkey,” he reiterated, warning that whoever carries out a racist act would be subject to be “held accountable.”