Several posters opposing the upcoming visit of Turkish president Recep Tayyip Erdogan were seen on walls, trees and power columns in Komotini in Thrace, home of the Muslim minority in Greece.
The posters were reading “Unwanted – No to Erdogan visit in Thrace” and below was the coordination body of 22 local organizations and clubs that oppose the high visit.
The posters were spread around on Monday night and were taken down by police a day later.
Police detained three people and took them to police station. The detained were held for two hours and were later released. No case against them was filed although the law provides that hanging of posters is not allowed without permission.
In a letter to the President of the Republic, the Prime Minister and the Foreign Minister, statement, the coordination committee of the action “Spartakus” described Erdogan as “neo-sultan” and said that his visit will bring nothing new neither yp ye bilateral relations, nor to the Turkish occupation of Cyprus, nor to “democracy” in Turkey where thousands are being persecuted.
Local Milliet, the newspaper of the Turkish-speaking minority in Thrace, described those who oppose Erdogan’s visit as racists. “Racist organizations first gathered signatures and then hanged the posters in Yenimahalle suburb of Komoniti where Turks live,” the news paper noted.
After arriving in Athens for meetings with President Pavlopoulos and Prime Minister Tsipras on Thursday, Erdogan will visit Thrace on Friday.
He will join the Friday prayers in a local mosque and meet with local authorities and members and organizations of the Turkish-speaking Muslim minority.