Zaman school [in Cambodia] resists call for closure

Zaman principal Isa Antepli speaks to reporters at a press conference where he and students’ parents asked that the schools be allowed to remain open in the wake of Turkey’s calls for their closure. Photo: Heng Chivoan
Zaman principal Isa Antepli speaks to reporters at a press conference where he and students’ parents asked that the schools be allowed to remain open in the wake of Turkey’s calls for their closure. Photo: Heng Chivoan


Date posted: August 26, 2016

Sen David and Yesenia Amaro

Zaman school officials and parents yesterday urged the Cambodian government not to shutter the schools as the Turkish Ambassador to Cambodia Ilhan Tug has requested, saying students will ultimately suffer.

The Turkish Embassy has repeatedly called for the schools’ closure in recent weeks, citing their links to Fethullah Gulen, whom the Turkish government accuses of orchestrating a recent coup attempt.

But school officials and parents asked the schools be allowed to continue operating, stressing at a press conference that the schools have no terrorist ties.

Bou Anovita, parent of a fifth-grader at the primary Zaman International School, said most students have deep attachment to the schools as they typically begin to study there in kindergarten, as her daughter did.

“We appeal to the government not to close the schools,” she said. “It will affect my daughter’s feelings. She wants to study here. The environment and the program here is very good.”

During a meeting with Foreign Affairs Minister Prak Sokhon earlier this week, Tug reiterated his case for the closure of the Zaman schools in Cambodia. Last month, the ambassador said his country was seeking the closure of all schools affiliated with the Gulen Movement, founded by Fethullah Gulen.

The total enrollment for the primary and secondary schools along with Zaman University is about 2,000 students, said Hakan Atasever, public relations director for Zaman. Isa Antepli, principal at the primary campus, said the school has been open for nearly 20 years and continues to expand, with a new enrollment of more than 400 students.

“Our school is not related to any terrorists,” he said.

But it’s only “natural” the schools would claim not to have any ties with the so-called Fetullah Gulen Terrorist Organisation, Tug said yesterday.

“We should not forget that concealment is their key tactic,” he said in an email. “The members of this cult are ordered to disguise their affiliation with Gulen.”

He also cited the “Gulen Schools Worldwide List” where the Cambodian schools are listed. “The Maarif Foundation was established in Turkey to seamlessly take over the schools so that the education of these students will not be effected in any way, if requested by the authorities of the relevant countries,” he said.

Sokhon said his ministry already conveyed the request to close the schools to related officials, in particular the Ministry of Education. But officials will have to make their own determination as to whether the schools are actually connected to a terrorist organisation.

“That would mean solid proof, something we have not received yet,” Sokhon said in a message yesterday.

Officials would also need to consider legal and administrative procedures, and so far, the schools have not violated any Cambodian law or regulation, he said.

Source: The Phnom Penh Post , August 26, 2016


Related News

A Match Made in Hell: The Budding Bromance of Trump and Erdogan

Can two power-hungry egomaniacs forge a lasting alliance? Much depends on an extradition request, and whether Trump will continue the alliance with Syria’s Kurds.

How hateful discourse manipulates our perception

Claims have been made that these multi-billion-dollar deals have generated a huge hoard of funds for Erdoğan to buy off some media outlets through proxies, hire new sets of journalists to defend his government line and even convert critical analysts with fat checks to prod them to the other side of the aisle. And these claims also explain why some media groups are conducting black propaganda against the Hizmet movement.

Gabon is very satisfied with Turkish school

20 July 2012 / MİNHAC ÇELİK, İSTANBUL President Ali Bongo Ondimba of Gabon has said his country is very satisfied with a school opened by Turkish volunteers there and called on volunteers to open more schools. “We are very satisfied that Turkey opened a school in Gabon. This is very encouraging and needs to be […]

Gülen’s lawyer: Views other than state ideology considered a crime in Turkey

Nurullah Albayrak, the lawyer of prominent Turkish Islamic scholar Fethullah Gülen, has criticized the blocking of herkul.org, a website that regularly broadcasts speeches by Gülen, saying views that are different from the state ideology are considered a crime in Turkey today.

Kimse Yok Mu opens education complex in Kenya

Kimse Yok Mu, one of the largest charity organizations in Turkey, has opened an education complex in the town of Malindi in Kenya comprising a dormitory, school and public kitchen.

How Erdogan is covering up the corruption scandal

In a blunt violation of Turkish laws and ethical norms, authorities removed nearly 100 police chiefs, who were either involved in the graft raids or pose a possible risk to the government. Two additional prosecutors were appointed to supervise the case, a move mostly interpreted by experts as an attempt to control the judicial process. The government has launched an unprecedented witch-hunt in public institutions and continues to purge any bureaucrat it believes could be cooperative with prosecutors in the graft investigation. Four ministers whose names were linked to these investigations refused to step down despite calls from the opposition.

Latest News

Fethullah Gülen’s Condolence Message for South African Human Rights Defender Archbishop Desmond Tutu

Hizmet Movement Declares Core Values with Unified Voice

Ankara systematically tortures supporters of Gülen movement, Kurds, Turkey Tribunal rapporteurs say

Erdogan possessed by Pharaoh, Herod, Hitler spirits?

Devious Use of International Organizations to Persecute Dissidents Abroad: The Erdogan Case

A “Controlled Coup”: Erdogan’s Contribution to the Autocrats’ Playbook

Why is Turkey’s Erdogan persecuting the Gulen movement?

Purge-victim man sent back to prison over Gulen links despite stage 4 cancer diagnosis

University refuses admission to woman jailed over Gülen links

In Case You Missed It

‘TUSKON is a reliable and long-time friend of ours’

Turkish schools open up trade channels too

Enes Kanter: “I’m getting death threats almost every day”

Kimse Yok Mu working to resolve water problem in Africa

Bank Asya sells stakes in 2 subsidiaries

Aid organization head blasts terror probe

CHP deputy asks PM to stop arrest of women after giving birth

Copyright 2022 Hizmet News