Ghana Muslims pray for Turkey mine disaster victims

ACCRA – Ghanaian Muslims across the country on Friday performed absentee funeral prayers for scores of workers killed in a Tuesday mine blast in western Turkey.

Sheikh Usuman Nuhu Sharubutu, Ghana's chief imam, called for the special prayers, which were performed following Friday prayers in all ten of Ghana's regional capitals.

Absentee funeral prayers can be performed by Muslims for coreligionists who die in other locales.

Muslims congregate in mosques every Friday to perform weekly prayers.

In a speech read out on his behalf at Accra's Abosey Okai Central Mosque, Sharubutu offered his condolences to the Turkish people.

"On my behalf and the entire Muslim Ummah [nation] of the Republic of Ghana, we send to you this message of solidarity, expressing our sympathies and condolences to the entire people of Turkey for the unfortunate coal mine disaster in western Turkey," he said.

He went on to say that he had asked "all the Muslim Ummah and all mosques in Ghana to say prayers for our sister country, Turkey."

"My dear beloved people of Turkey, let us be patient because Allah will reward us for being patient," Sharubut said. "May Allah almighty give us the heart to withstand this test."

Resul Yesilyurt, Turkish coordinator of the Ghana National Mosque Project, which is being built with support from the Turkish government, addressed worshippers at the mosque, thanking the chief Imam for the prayers and condolences on behalf of the Turkish people.

"The Ummah of Islam are all one. Anything that affects one person affects the rest," he said.

"We should say 'Alhamdulillah' ['Thank God'] because we have seen that we are one nation," he said. "I want to thank you all for the prayers."

Over 280 Turkish miners were killed in Tuesday's blast and subsequent fire at the Soma coal mine in western Turkey – the worst-ever mining accident in the country's history.

Copyright © 2014 Anadolu Agency