World Bulletin / News Desk
Turkey’s deputy prime minister Bekir Bozdag has revealed that the government is sending 65 leaders of the minority Alevi community to Europe.
The Alevi leaders, known as ‘dedes’, will be sent to in an all-expenses paid trip to Europe in November to commemorate certain religious festivals in the Islamic calendar month of Muharram.
Deputy prime minister Bozdag, who is responsible for Turkey’s department of religious affairs, approved the request of the 65 leaders, who expressed their wish to celebrate the month with their fellow Alevi citizens in Europe, particularly in Belgium, Austria and France.
Although it is not clear whether or not the leaders will receive wages similar to the salary received by official employees of the Turkish department of religious affairs, the Alevi Bektashi Federation has already said that they are not seeking any wages from the Turkish government.
As a mystical branch of Shiite Islam, Alevis are a religious minority in the largely Sunni Muslim Turkish republic and are not represented by the governmental department of religious affairs.Last Mod: 21 Ekim 2013, 12:14