Turkish union slams West over increasing racist attacks

Turkish-Islamic Union in Europe (ATIB) on Sunday criticized some Western countries, including Germany, for remaining idle in the face of increasing attacks on mosques.

Speaking to media at the union's headquarters in Cologne, Durmus Yildirim, head of ATIB, said that racial attacks and pressures on Turkish mosques and foundations increased in 2018.

I think assailants will be rounded up if it is wanted, Yildirim said.

After all these incidents, it is not fair that assailants are not caught, or freed after rounding up. There are no deterrent penalties on this, he added.

On Dec. 30, an under-construction mosque in western Germany's Duisburg city was attacked by unidentified assailants, who defaced the building with racist slogans.

Germany, a country of over 81 million people, has the second-largest Muslim population in Western Europe after France. Among the country's nearly 4.7 million Muslims, 3 million are of Turkish origin.

In recent years, the country has seen growing Islamophobia and hatred of migrants triggered by propaganda from far-right and populist parties.

Source: Anadolu Agency