Wulff asks for more religious freedoms after Tarsus mass
Germany’s President Christian Wulff appeals for more religious freedom to Turkey’s parliament. “We think that religious freedoms are a fundamental right and hope the final steps will be taken and some legal changes will be made to ensure Christians in Turkey have all of their religious freedoms and exercise their religions properly,” Wulff said at St. Paul’s Sunday morning mass in Tarsus.
10/22/2010 Turkey, Germany (Today’s Zaman) – German President Christian Wulff took part in a religious ceremony at a church-turned museum in southern Turkey on Thursday, following which he reiterated his earlier calls for more religious freedoms for Christians in Turkey.
On the heels of similar remarks he made in Turkish Parliament in Ankara on Wednesday, Wulff proceeded to the southern province of Mersin’s Tarsus district to attend a mass at the St. Paul Museum, which has been transformed from its original function as a church. Christians who came to Tarsus from downtown Mersin as well as from other provinces including Mardin, Hatay, Adana and Adıyaman also participated in the mass that Wulff attended together with his wife. “No one should be afraid of different cultures and religions. They should in fact be seen as enriching,” Wulff said. Noting that they did everything they can to provide Muslims in Germany the best conditions for them to practice their religion, Wulff said they are expecting some legal arrangements from Turkey in reciprocity.
“We think that religious freedoms are a fundamental right and hope the final steps will be taken and some legal changes will be made to ensure Christians in Turkey have all of their religious freedoms and exercise their religions properly,” he noted. When asked what he meant by legal arrangements, he answered: “What is most important for us is for the Christian churches to educate their own clergy from among their own communities.