Pressures against the Alevi community in Turkey are becoming alarmingly commonplace.
Just like the Christian, Jewish, and Yazidi communities in Turkey, Alevis have also been victims of Islamic supremacism for centuries — both in the Ottoman Empire and in the Republic of Turkey.
Alevis are a religious minority Turkey with a distinct faith, philosophy, and culture that largely upholds secularism and humanism. Turkey’s Alevi community is estimated in the tens of millions — up to 25% of the population, making up the country’s largest minority. But the number is only an approximation, because legally, Alevis in Turkey are “non-existent”. The Turkish government does not officially recognize them, so it does not include them in a census and counts them as “Muslims.”
Recently, officials at the Istanbul airport seized the passport of Fatma Tunç, the wife of a dissident author, Aziz Tunç. Mrs. Tunç was preparing to board a plane to Germany when she was told by officials that her passport has been cancelled because “there are dangerous people in her family” and that for her to travel outside of Turkey, her husband and son would have to return. Aziz Tunç’s passport has also been cancelled due to his being prosecuted at a political trial in Turkey.