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European Journal

Turkey: Religious Conflict

Turkey's Alevis are increasingly concerned about a spillover of violence from the civil war in neighboring Syria. A number of Alevi interests have been attacked and homes defaced.

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Approximately 10 million Alevi Muslims live in Turkey. They differ from the Sunni majority in so far as they allow alcohol and do not necessarily fast for Ramadan. They are keen to distance themselves from Syria's Alawites - the minority to which President Bashar Assad belongs. Even so, the Alevis in Turkey have been targeted by Sunnis since the troubles began in Syria.