Established by Fathi Ibrahim Bayoud 2005 - Homs

Campaign to respect particularity of Turkish Community by Syrian activists

Features | 2014-07-28 00:00:00
Campaign to respect particularity of Turkish Community by Syrian activists

Reporting by Faris Al Rifai; Translation by Yusra Ahmed

Many activists in Istanbul initiated a campaign called “Let's be correct” to prompt Syrians in the city to respect the particularity of the Turkish community, aiming to avoid problems have happened in Gaziantep and Kahramanmaras for weeks.

20 activists have distributed brochures to Syrian refugees in the city, which encourage them to avoid actions provoke Turkish people and show disrespect to them and might increase tension between the Turks and Syrians, like the need to pay pills and respect traffic lights, besides handing back rented houses as good as they rented them. Brochures listed some actions need avoiding like loud sounds and not respecting queues as well as throwing litter in street, besides gathering in inconvenient place.

Activists encouraged people to share food with their Turkish neighbors beside showing love the respect among Syrians themselves.

Brochures requested beggars to stop those practices because they affect Syrians’ reputation and the Turkish society as well.

About the idea of the campaign, Ra’ed Haqqi, the campaign’s supervisor says to Zaman Alwasl: “we are a group of Syrian youth, we want to keep the good image of Syrian people and protect our reputation, besides assuring Turkish people, as Turkey has welcomed us and help us to have good life, and tried to gather international and humanitarian effort to support us, we are trying to find solutions to the problems that led to clashes between Syrian and Turkish youth in some areas, besides explaining to Syrian people plans aiming to disturb the good relationships between Syrians and Turks”

Haqqi, the activists, explains that first step of the work included distributing two thousand educating brochures in public places where Syrians gather like restaurants and Syrian bakeries besides Syrian schools in Istanbul.

“The strategy of the campaign is different from what had been done before such gratitude brochures used to be distributed to Turkish people to express Syrians’ appreciation for the support their Turkish neighbors gave. our next step would include practical activities besides education lectures and forums” the activist details.

The campaign’s supervisor explains that minor differences between the Syrian and Turkish communities led to the tension seen in some places, like the attitude of work, and the strict sleeping and rest time among Turkish people, beside the kind of clothing especially girls’ clothes, as it is normal to wear short clothes for work and universities, where some Syrian young men had harassed some girls with those kind of clothes.

Zaman Alwasl
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