Europe’s largest cemevi opens in London
The London Alevi Cultural Centre, a religious organisation that Turkish and Kurdish Alevis founded in 1993, opened a new cemevi building in Wood Green that is expected to serve 200,000 people, Turkish newspaper Evrensel reported.
Cemevis are the places of worship for Turkey’s Alevi and Bektashi minority, but unlike Sunni mosques, they are not officially recognised by the Turkish state and are not entitled to state subsidies.
Evrensel reported that the new London Cemevi is financed entirely by the Alevi community.
Müslüm Doğan, an MP from Turkey’s pro-Kurdish opposition Democratic Peoples’ Party (HDP) who took part in the Cemevi’s opening ceremony, said:
Alevis in Turkey are not allowed to practice their religion freely, but in Europe, that is possible.
One day we will be free in our own lands as well.
Apart from members of the HDP, parliamentarians from Turkey’s main opposition Republican People’s Party (CHP) and the UK’s Labour Party joined the opening ceremony, Evrensel reported.