FEZANA Expresses Concern at Turkish President’s Remarks About Zoroastrians

FEZANA recently wrote to the Turkish Ambassadors in Washington D.C., Ottawa and the Permanent Mission to the U.N. in New York; to express concern at the recent anti-Zoroastrian rhetoric emanating from the Turkish leadership. Below is a copy of the letter sent to the above mentioned officials.

Monday July 11, 2016

The Honorable Serdar Kılıç

Ambassador of the Republic of Turkey to the United States

Embassy of Turkey To the United States

2525 Massachusetts Ave NW

Washington, DC 20008

Respected Ambassador Kılıç 

At the Federation of Zoroastrian Associations of North America, the umbrella organization of Zoroastrian communities across the United States and Canada, we are deeply dismayed by the recent anti-Zoroastrian rhetoric emanating from Turkey. It is especially hurtful to hear some of it coming directly from President Recep Tayyip Erdogan.

Zoroastrians worldwide are minuscule in number, and citizens of many lands. Everywhere they reside they are known and admired for living in harmony with members of other faiths — Muslims, Christians, Hindus, and others — and for contributing greatly to the well-being of  society regardless of religious affiliation.  And throughout the centuries, Zoroastrians have displayed exemplary loyalty to and affection for the lands of their birth even as they have held fast to their ancient faith. Always, they have been guided by the core tenets of their religion — Good Thoughts, Good Words, Good Deeds.

So it is disconcerting to hear invective being hurled at them in Turkey, where most likely just a handful of Zoroastrians reside. Such rhetoric, sowing suspicion of a minority community, typically ends up giving license for discrimination, or worse. It also has the potential to defame Zoroastrians far beyond Turkey’s borders, in regions not familiar with this peaceable community.

Turkey is a great nation. What is said and done there is heard and seen all over the world. We appeal to the Turkish authorities to cease this baseless targeting of Zoroastrians.

Most sincerely,

Homi D. Gandhi

President

FEZANA


The above letter was also sent to

The Honorable Selcuk Unal 

Ambassador of Turkey to Canada

197 Wurtemburg Street

Ottawa, Ontario K1N 8L9

Canada

 and

The Honorable Yaşar Halit Çevik

Ambassador of the Republic of Turkey to the United Nations

Permanent Mission of Turkey to the United Nations

885 Second Avenue, 45th Floor

New York, NY 10017

FEZANA represents a diverse and growing Zarathushti community in North America.

Guided by the blessings of AHURA MAZDA and the teachings of our Prophet Zarathushtra; the association was founded in 1987 It serves as the coordinating body for 27 Zoroastrian Associations in the United States and Canada.

The activities of FEZANA are conducted in a spirit of mutual respect, co-operation and unity amongst all Member associations, and with due regard for the principles of GOODNESS, TRUTH, REASON, BENEVOLENCE, IMPLICIT TRUST and CHARITY towards all Mankind.

:+: Baname Khoda Kshnothro Ahura Mazda