ABTTF President: “Stilyanidis once again described the Turkish community in Western Thrace as a threat and danger by pretexting the migration and refugee issue at the Greece-Turkey border.”
The New Democracy Party (NDP) Deputy from Rodopi Evripidis Stilyanidis used expressions targeting the Turkish community in Western Thrace in the interview he gave to Xronos 87.5 Radio on 12 January 2021.
Responding to a question regarding the possibility of creating a structure for the permanent settlement of migrants in Western Thrace, Stilyanidis indicated that his personal opinion with respect to the permanent settlement of refugees in Western Thrace is that it should not be as such and that he does not accept this. Noting that he understands the reaction from Evros province and shares the view that Western Thrace should not be a permanent settlement for migrants, Stilyanidis said that he does not want such a population mix (with migrants), especially in Western Thrace which has also a minority population, and especially in Rodopi and Xanthi, which could cause problems in the future.
“Although he knows very well the realities of the region, Stilyanidis who is from Komotini continues to describe the Turkish community in Western Thrace as a threat and danger. This time, he’s targeting us by using the migrant and refugee problem as an excuse. As Western Thrace Turks, we are our bound to our country Greece with love and loyalty. Our only wish is for our rights which are guaranteed by treaties to be restored, for our educational and religious autonomy to be respected and for an end to the systematic discrimination to which we are subjected to. We urge Stilyanidis to leave his dream world, see for himself the realities, end such provocative statements and act with the responsibility attached to his quality of politician”, said Halit Habip Oğlu, President of the Federation of Western Thrace Turks in Europe (ABTTF).