Unsecular Turkey

Here’s an interesting corrective to the notion that Turkey is a “secular state” as so often described in Western media reports.

The Diyanet (the Turkish Directorate of Religious Services) has long been one of the largest government departments, and is devoted to Sunni Islam. In Turkey, clergy are government employees. With recent expansions, the number of people employed by the Diyanet will go up to 130 thousand. Before the current Islamist ruling party took power in 2002, this number was around 70 thousand. According to some estimates, the country has more mosques than schools.

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About Taner Edis

Professor of physics at Truman State University