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Wednesday, January 5, 2011

Muslims In Greek Cyprus Want Back Mosque Area

January 5, 2011
World Bulletin

The 20-member association takes back the property around Hala Sultan Tekke in Larnaca, which Greeks reportedly plan to build an entertainment center.

Muslims in on Greek Cypriot side established the "Cypriot Supreme Council of Muslims", demanding the property around the Hala Sultan Tekke, angering the Greek archbishop.

The 20-member association want to take back the property around Hala Sultan Tekke in Larnaca, which Greeks reportedly plan to build an entertainment center.

According to Turkey's Anadolu news agency, citing Greek Simerini newspaper, "the association's emblem carries 'flags of the Ottoman Empire, the Ottoman navy flag and a ship with Ottoman robe (kaftan).'"

The President of the Association, Imam Sakip, talked to Sigma TV and expressed uneasiness with the decicion that the Greek Cypriot administration allowed an entertainment center to be built 20 meters from Hala Sultan Tekke. He has accused the Greek Cypriot side of not showing respect for the Muslim places of worship.

Imam Sakip said, "I would like to give this message to the Republic of Cyprus (Greek part) that you need to be an example of a European country," he said. In order to show this, the Republic of Cyprus should hand over the keys of Hala Sultan Tekke and the property around it to the association," he said.

Applying for registration officially to the Greek Interior Ministry, the association will initiate the procedures necessary to request hundreds of acres of surrounding property to the Hala Sultan Tekke in Larnaca Salt Lake area.

Archbishop angry

On the other hand, the report says Greek Orthodox Church Archbishop Chrysostomos II reacted to the establishment of the "Cypriot Supreme Council of Muslims" and its demands, as well as the accusations that were directed towards him on the bad condition of Muslim places of worship.

Chrysostomos II claimed, if the members of the association visit him, he will show them "how well the Muslim churches on the Greek Cypriot side are and ready to be worshipped in at any time."

The Archbishop also said "he will show them that the Christian monuments from 12th, 13th and 14th centuries have been destroyed one after the other in the North."

Hala Sultan Tekke or the Mosque of Umm Haram is a very prominent Muslim shrine near Larnaca. Umm Haram was Prophet Muhammad's wet nurse.
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