Minister calls on Christian and Jewish minorities to return to Turkey

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Christian and Jewish minorities who have left Turkey can come back to their home country as the mistakes of the past will not be committed again, said Culture and Tourism Minister Ömer Çelik during his visit to the Russian capital, Moscow, March 16.

“If you encounter troubles anywhere in the world, know that the first place you can appeal to is the Turkish embassy. Turkey has become a democracy that protects every identity and their historical legacies,” he said, adding that minorities had faced many problems in the past. “Turkish democracy now gathers in itself every identity.”

Çelik added that the same care was shown in the restoration of mosques, churches and synagogues. He also mentioned that the Taksim Barracks, known as Topçu Kışlası, which are planned to be restored in the near future, had marks of Russian architecture. “[As the Justice and Development Party] we consider the traces left from the Russians in Anatolia as historical legacies,” he said. 

Speaking about tourism, Çelik said the government expected an increase of 15 percent in the number of Russian tourists who visit Turkey this year.

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