Russian scholar: Gülen promotes peaceful education for a world mired in conflict

Professor Rostislav Ribakov (Photo: Cihan)
Professor Rostislav Ribakov (Photo: Cihan)

Date posted: April 21, 2015


Prominent Russian scholar Professor Rostislav Ribakov has praised US-based Turkish Islamic scholar Fethullah Gülen for the schools opened around the world by his supporters, saying that these schools are bringing up a new generation of students who uphold world peace.

In an interview with Today’s Zaman on Tuesday, Ribakov, the former president of the Institute of Oriental Studies of the Russian Academy of Sciences, likened Gülen to Mahatma Gandhi in his efforts to bring peace to the world and said that it was “meaningful” that Gülen had been awarded the prestigious Gandhi King Ikeda Peace Award, past recipients of which include Nobel laureates Nelson Mandela, Desmond Tutu and Michael Gorbachev.

The Martin Luther King Jr. International Chapel at Morehouse College in Atlanta honored Gülen with the award on April 9 for promoting ideas shared by the world’s leading peace and civil rights activists.

“Gandhi led a lot of people who did not resort to violence and bloodshed. Gülen’s followers, who are bringing up a new generation in Turkey, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, India, Bulgaria and in other countries, follow a different method [for the same end]. They [teachers in Gülen’s schools] do not insist on manufacturing sympathy for Turkey on the part of the students. [Instead] there is a culture of being able to live together with other cultures and nationalities,” said Ribakov.

He also lashed out at the defamation campaign conducted against Gülen and his followers by some pro-government circles in Turkey, who defame the scholar by calling him a terrorist, leveling accusations that have no legal basis. “Gülen was among the first Muslims who criticized the terrorist attack staged in Beslan… He always stands against terrorism. The expression ‘A Muslim cannot be a terrorist and a terrorist cannot be Muslim’ was coined by him,” Ribakov added.

“It is not easy to disprove this kind of accusations… There is famous saying in Russia… When you ask about someone ‘Did someone steal his coat or was it him who stole someone’s coat?’ you associate that person with theft… Then, people begin to consider him a thief,” he said.

It was revealed on March 24 that Gülen has been named as the main suspect in an investigation into alleged cheating in a Turkish civil service examination, despite the fact that he has been living in self-imposed exile since 1999 and that there isn’t a shred of evidence to prove he has anything to do with the State Personnel Examination (KPSS). This move strengthens claims that such investigations are targeting the Gülen movement — also known as the Hizmet movement — as a part of a revenge campaign for corruptions probes that went public in December 2013, implicating four ex-ministers and close associates of Erdoğan.

To discredit the probes, Erdoğan has claimed that the Gülen movement staged the graft investigations in order to topple the government.

Ribakov also described as “meaningless” the accusation that Gülen is cooperating with foreign intelligence agencies, a claim put forward by Erdoğan. The Turkish president said in February that the Gülen movement had cooperated with Mossad, Israel’s foreign intelligence agency.

‘I’m concerned about the future of the world’

Ribakov voiced concern over the deterioration of global stability at present and shared his disappointment over the fact that the 21st century — which was expected by many to be more peaceful than the preceding century — instead began with the Sept. 11, 2001 terrorist attacks. “It is a frustrating to see that anything is still possible in the 21st century. Incidents that we thought to be things of the past are still taking place. It seems that there is no end to the issues in the Middle East. Ukraine has become a wound in the middle of Europe,” Ribakov said.

However, he expressed pleasure over the close relationship between Russia and Turkey. “Turkey acts cautiously in its policies towards Russia. Southern Turkey now receives a flow of 4 million Russian tourists [per year] and has become like [another province of] Russia. There will be also a gas pipeline built in Turkey [by Russia]… These are positive developments,” Ribakov said.

Source: Today's Zaman , April 21, 2015

Related News

Filipina, infant freed from Turkish jail, but…

The Filipina mother who forcibly was separated from her infant and detained in Turkey for weeks has been released. But their reunion is being cut short by her deportation, in the crackdown following a failed coup in which she had no part. Information is being withheld from Karen’s lawyer and the Philippine Embassy staff assisting her. Forcible separation of an infant from her mother is a humanitarian concern.

Launch of Fethullah Gulen Chair in Islamic Studies and Intercultural Dialogue at Deakin University

The Melbourne based Deakin University launched its inaugural Chair, named after Fethullah Gulen, in Islamic Studies and Intercultural Dialogue with a ceremony held on Tuesday 22 November at its Melbourne Corporate Centre. Professor Jane Den Hollander, President and Vice-Chancellor of Deakin University officially launched the Chair.

Erdogan is transforming Turkey into a totalitarian prison

In Turkey under President Recep Tayyip Erdogan, the tweet has been turned into a crime, and a troubled democracy is being turned into a dictatorship. Gradually but inexorably, a nation that once aspired to be an exemplar of enlightened moderation is being transformed by Mr. Erdogan into a dreary totalitarian prison.

American reporters got an intriguing glimpse into the political mind-set in Turkey

Turkish leaders said they were astonished that they had so far been unsuccessful in persuading the United States Justice Department to even ask a federal judge to extradite Fethullah Gulen. The Turkish government said it had provided the United States with extensive proof against Mr. Gulen, who has denied involvement. But Turkish officials refused in several interviews to publicize a single piece of that evidence.

Opposition CHP to take Gül-approved dershane law to Constitutional Court

The main opposition Republican People’s Party (CHP) is preparing to take a controversial law closing Turkey’s dershanes, or private preparatory schools, to the Constitutional Court, the party said a day after President Abdullah Gül signed the bill into law on Wednesday.

Kimse Yok Mu extends help to Afghan quake victims

International charity organization Kimse Yok Mu (KYM) reached out to people who were affected by a magnitude 7.5 earthquake which shook northern Afghanistan on Sunday.

Latest News

This notable Pocono resident has been living here in exile since 1999

Logistics companies seized over Gülen links sold in fast-track auction

That is Why the Turkish Government could Pay 1 Billion Euros

ECtHR rules Bulgaria violated rights of Turkish journalist who was deported despite seeking asylum

Fethullah Gülen’s Message of Condolences in the Wake of the Western European Floods

Pregnant woman kept in prison for 4 months over Gülen links despite regulations

Normalization of Abduction, Torture, and Death in Erdogan’s Turkey

Turkey’s Maarif Foundation illegally seized German-run school in Ethiopia, says manager

Failed 2016 coup was gov’t plot to purge Gülenists from state bodies, journalist claims

In Case You Missed It

Did you say extradition?

Well-known sociologist says Gülen’s name on terrorist list ’alarming’

Ongoing political raids against schools and businesses are unconstitutional

Turkish-Arab forum focuses on gov’t oppression on Hizmet

Ugandan FA Minister: Turkish schools paved the way for Turkey to reach out to Africa

President Gül opens Turkish-Kazakh school in Astana

Lamb-hunt in the Netherlands

Copyright 2021 Hizmet News