Man verbally attacks Kılıçdaroğlu over his Alevi identity during cemetery visit

Main opposition CHP leader and Nation Alliance's presidential candidate Kemal Kılıçdaroğlu on April 21 paid a visit to a cemetery in quake-torn Adıyaman. At the cemetery, a citizen verbally attacked Kılıçdaroğlu over his Alevi identity and said he does not know Islamic prayers.

Kılıçdaroğlu and other party members are at the cemetry during the verbal assault.

Duvar English

Main opposition Republican People's Party (CHP) leader and Nation Alliance's presidential candidate Kemal Kılıçdaroğlu was in earthquake-hit Adıyaman on the first day of Eid al-Fitr holiday on April 21.

Kılıçdaroğlu visited the Adıyaman Municipality Cemetery and the graves of citizens who lost their lives in the earthquakes of Feb. 6.

While prayers were being offered at the cemetery, a man shouted at Kılıçdaroğlu: "He doesn't know how to read Fatiha (an Islamic prayer), why are you making him recite," according to reporing by online news outlet Medyascope

After shouting, the man was removed by bystanders. Citizens praying at the cemetery responded to the shouting man by saying "Don't be rude."

Kılıçdaroğlu later posted about the issue on Twitter. "At the cemetery, a grieving person can say and do anything; one must give to their grief. Let's not talk about these things today, let's commemorate our losses properly. Please don't try to expose that person, let's act responsibly, especially on social media. I have forgiven them," he wrote.

Good (İYİ) Party Spokesperson Kürşad Zorlu made a statement on his Twitter account about the incident and wrote: "We condemn the provocation against Kılıçdaroğlu in Adıyaman."

Kılıçdaroğlu on April 19 talked about his Alevi heritage, something he does not frequently express as millions of other Alevis in Turkey. In the video titled “Alevi,” Kılıçdaroğlu called on young people who are going to vote for the first time to “pull this country out of the harmful sectarian debates.”

Alevis make up an estimated 15-25 percent of Turkey’s population, the second main religious group after Sunni Islam.