CHP deputy questions Turkish university rector’s call to kill democrats

Ali Şeker, a deputy from Turkey’s main opposition Republican People’s Party (CHP), has questioned a call in an article written by Prof. Dr. Ahmet Ağırakça, the rector of Artuklu University in the southeastern Turkish province of Mardin, to kill democrats.

According to a report by the BirGün daily, Ağırakça included democracy among a list in an encyclopedia of ideologies that require the death penalty in Islam. Ağırakça recently came under the scrutiny of Turkish opposition parties after taking to social media to recommend that the academic mortarboard be replaced with a turban to facilitate Islamic prayer.

The CHP’s Şeker read out a parliamentary question to Turkish 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.

According to a report by Ahval, the six-volume Shamil Encyclopedia of Islam, the writing of which Ağırakça oversaw and edited, defined an apostate as “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 encyclopedia 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 in Iraq and the Levant [ISIL].”

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

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