Mar 28 2018

Turkish university rector calls for killing of democrats

The rector of Artuklu University in the southeastern Turkish province of Mardin included democracy among a list of ideologies that require the death penalty in Islam in an encyclopaedia, left-wing newspaper BirGün said.

Ahmet Ağırakça came under scrutiny from Turkish opposition parties recently after taking to social media to recommend that the academic mortarboard be replaced with a turban to facilitate Islamic prayer.

CHP parliamentarian Ali Şeker read out a parliamentary question to Prime Minister Binali Yıldırım asking why his government had appointed a man who had published that Islam requires the killing of apostates, including those who believe in democracy.

The six-volume Shamil Encyclopaedia of Islam, which Ağırakça oversaw and edited, defined an apostate as follows:

“To not declare an unbeliever an infidel, to become doubtful about infidels and to believe that the non-Islamic ideologies they have produced are true; to worship monuments, graves and the dead; to endorse idolatrous systems such as Jewishness, Christianity, Communism, capitalism, democracy, social democracy, etc.”

Furthermore, it stated, “the penalty for an apostate who does not repent is to be killed”.

Elsewhere in the encyclopaedia it was stated that a woman who refused to serve a man was rebelling against God, a position that Şeker described as “no different to the mindset of the Islamic State (ISIS)”.

Ağırakça, who was appointed rector of the university in 2014, was also in the news in January for demanding a terrorism investigation into one of his male lecturers he had criticised for acting “too feminine”.