Head of Turkey’s top religious body visits anti-Atatürk historian on anniversary of his death

The head of Turkey’s Religious Affairs Directorate on Saturday visited with an Islamist historian known for his stance against Mustafa Kemal Atatürk, the founder of Republic of Turkey, as the nation commemorated the death anniversary of the iconic figure, left-nationalist news site OdaTV reported.

Saturday marked the 80th death anniversary of Atatürk, which is commemorated nation wide in ceremonies attended by state officials, including President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan, who visits Ataturk's mausoleum in the country’s capital Ankara.

Turkey's state-run Religious Affairs Directorate did not partake in a commemoration this year, while photos emerged of its head Ali Erbaş on Saturday visiting an Islamist historian known for his strong opposition to the founder of the country's republic

OdaTV shared photos of Erbaş’s visit with Kadri Mısıroğlu, recalling that historian said he wished the Greeks had been victorious against the Turkish army during the Turkish War of Independence.

Mısıroğlu, who once said in a video that  a day would come in Turkey where Atatürk’s statues would be dragged on the ground ''like a dead dog,'' previously applauded Erdoğan for being “a statesman who defies the Jews,” saying that Erdoğan storming out of a 2009 discussion with Israeli President Shimon Peres was “more important than the War of Independence.”