German-Turkish Institute Head Sacked for Holocaust Comparison | Germany| News and in-depth reporting from Berlin and beyond | DW | 27.06.2008
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German-Turkish Institute Head Sacked for Holocaust Comparison

A German institute of Turkish studies sacked its Turkish-born director after he said Turks in Germany and other European countries suffered discrimination similar to that suffered by the Jews in the Holocaust.

Polish Jews are rounded up by Nazis in the Warsaw ghetto

The director compared the treatment of Turks to that of the Jews

The Essen-based Center for Turkish Studies, which is funded by the state of North Rhine-Westphalia, said on Thursday, June 27, that it had decided to dismiss Faruk Sen for the comment and for previous remarks that presented a distorted picture of relations between Turks and Germans in Germany.

Sen had contributed to polarization, rather than integration, the institute's central aim, it said.

Sen, who has led the well-known institute since its founding in 1985, said he would launch a legal appeal.

Speaking to the German daily Tageszeitung from Istanbul, he described the decision as an "overreaction by the executive" in remarks to be published Friday.

More than a month ago, Sen compared discrimination against Turks in Western Europe with the persecution of the Jews by Germany during World War II in an article in the Turkish newspaper Referans.

He subsequently distanced himself from the remarks and apologized.

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