Statement Of The Spokesman Of The Ministry Of Foreign Affairs Tanju Bilgiç In Response To A Question Regarding The Law Adopted In The Greek Parliament On 9 September 2014

Republic Of Turkey Ministry Of Foreign Affairs 10.09.2014

QA-29, 10 September 2014

We have followed closely the preparation and adoption processes of the Law on the Punishment of Racism and Xenophobia adopted by the Greek Parliament on 9 September 2014 and have suggested Greek authorities at each level to act in a sensitive manner.

In this context, we have also noted the statement that the Greek Minister of Justice, Transparency and Human rights, made at the Greek Parliament session on 5 September that this is not a foreign policy action and does not target any neighboring country, including Turkey.

We will follow closely the implementation of the Law which refers, inter alia, to groundless resolutions adopted by the Greek Parliament in the past at the risk of undermining the principle of freedom of expression which is the foundation of pluralistic democracies.

On the other hand, we believe that the enactment of the aforementioned Law can pave the way for the punishment of the discriminatory and marginalizing acts and discourses to which the Turkish Minority in the Western Thrace whose grievances in Greece were also reflected in ECtHR rulings and the community of Turkish origin living in Rhodes and Kos, have been exposed.

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