The leader of Turkey’s main opposition party vowed on Tuesday not to forget the 1995 Srebrenica genocide.
Speaking to the parliamentary group of his Republican People’s Party (CHP), Kemal Kilicdaroglu said his party would never accept such a massacre in Europe, “which is a cradle of civilization in a sense.”
“We won’t ever forget it, we won’t let it be forgotten,” Kilicdaroglu said of the genocide that took place in present-day Bosnia and Herzegovina during the chaotic and violent breakup of Yugoslavia.
The CHP will also closely monitor what he said were “provocations” in Turkey, he added.
His remarks came after Sunday’s incident when a group desecrated the Surp Takavor Armenian Church in Istanbul’s Kadikoy district.
“We’ll never forget that those who took to the walls of a church in Kadikoy and protested were provocateurs,” he said.
Kilicdaroglu underlined that his party respected all faiths. “It’s our duty to provide a clean environment where people practice their beliefs, prayers and worship to Allah.”
Turkish police on Monday detained three suspects for desecrating the church.
The prosecutors in Istanbul launched an investigation into a group playing music and dancing next to a stone cross atop the church’s large courtyard gate.
Police held the three suspects while an investigation is underway.
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