Turkey Has Voiced Concerns Over The Minaret Ban In Switzerland

President Abdullah Gül said the result of the referendum was a shame for the Swiss.

Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan underlined basic rights and freedoms in his speech. He said that a ban on minarets was something from the dark ages, and called for the mistake to be fixed as soon as possible.

He replied to the Swiss Justice Minister who had said that this ban was aimed at radical Islam, by asking what minarets had anything to do with radicalism. Foreign Minister Ahmet Davutoglu met Swiss Foreign Minister Micheline Calmy at the sidelines of the OSCE meeting in Greece, where he expressed Turkey's reaction.

The political opposition in Turkey also reacted harshly to the referendum.

Republican People's Party leader Deniz Baykal said this was a mentality, not just a few people's reaction to Islam.

Nationalist Movement Party leader Devlet Bahçeli said the referendum was a dark spot on human rights and religious freedom in Europe. Bahçeli said this all showed what dangerous levels anti-Islamic feelings had reached and that western values were limited to just Christianity.

Acting President of Religious Affairs Department Mehmet Görmez said the will behind the referendum was not correct.

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