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In Turkey, Christian Schools Subsidized by the State Increase

Sameer Vasta

Agenzia Fides - published on 11/04/14

Report released apparently aimed to show government is looking out for religious minorities

Ankara — In an apparent attempt to create awareness that Turkish authorities are watching out for the rights of religious minorities, the heads of the Directorate of National Education in Turkey have released new figures showing a growing number of Christian schools in the country receiving State support.

There are 55 schools belonging to foundations and institutions related to the Christian communities in Turkey already entitled to receive financial support from the State. Of these, 36 belong to the Armenian community, 18 to the Greek community and a kindergarten belonging to the Syriac Orthodox community. Five educational institutions belonging to the Jewish community were added to schools linked to the Christian communities. 

In September 2013, a dossier edited by the Economic and Social Foundation of Turkey had counted only 22 schools belonging to religious minorities throughout the country. In the year 1894, schools belonging to the minority communities were 6,437. The number dropped dramatically to 138 in the first years following the founding of the Turkish Republic, when the nationalist politics of the Union and Progress Committee, which aimed to build and impose the unique model of the "Turkish citizen" began to underpin the policy of expulsion of minority groups.

Christians in the Middle EastTurkey
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