MINELRES: ABTTF News: ABTTF put forward the problems of the Western Thrace Minority during OSCE meetings

minelres@lists.microlink.lv minelres@lists.microlink.lv
Thu Oct 11 15:55:23 2007

Original sender: ABTTF <news@abttf.org>

Press Release 

ABTTF put forward the problems of the Western Thrace Minority during
OSCE meetings
Human Dimension meeting of Organization for Security and Cooperation in
Europe (OSCE) began on 24 September in Warsaw, capital city of Poland.
Federation of Western Thrace Turks in Europe (ABTTF) participated the
meetings on minorities. Baris Hasan, Director of ABTTF Academic Research
and the Association of Western Thrace Turkish Minority with Higher
Education presented ABTTF during the meetings and had the opportunity to
bring the problems of the minority on to the OSCE’s agenda. 

Baris Hasan made a speech at the third day of the meetings and talked
about the human rights violations that took place in 2007 in Western
Thrace. Hasan explained the unfair implementations of new “Press Law”
and the current situation of “Minority Civil Society Support
Association”, called Greece Government, European Union and the
international society for solving the problems of the minority. 

Delegation of Greece to OSCE stated that Greek authorities had answered
the arguments that were put forward by ABTTF permanently, adding that
Greece would not answer any of the arguments of ABTTF anymore. However,
following the speech of Hasan about the new “Press Law”, Greek
delegation responded. 

Greek Ambassador Pantelis Karkavasis only told the sub-articles of the
press law which defended the multilingualism, not stating the most
critical point that with the new press law those sub-articles would be

We should follow a constructive and active policy

Halit Habipoglu, chairman of ABTTF, assessed the OSCE’s meeting,
underlining that ABTTF become an influential institution on
international platforms. Habipoglu stated that ABTTF achieved to attract
the attention of Greece that permanently ignored Western Thrace Minority

“We keep ourselves always updated on the problems of Turkish minority,
following a very active policy instead of complaining about the same
issues all the time. Up to this year, the same topics were discussed at
the OSCE’s meetings. That is why Greek delegation expressed their
intention not to answer the claims of Western Thrace Minority
Associations. Yet, ABTTF put forward current problems of the minorities,
making Greek delegation answer ABTTF’s questions. However, their answers
were not satisfactory.” said Habipoglu. 

Habipoglu underlined that establishments that represented Western Thrace
should be constructive, following an active policy to solve the problems
of the minority. 



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