Amid xenophobic campaign, far-right mob attacks Syrian refugees in Turkey | #socialmedia

President Recep Erdoğan’s government keeps refugees from reaching Europe. Credit: WikiMedia

A far-right mob of hundreds of people took to the streets of Altındağ district in Ankara on Wednesday night, chanting anti-Syrian slogans. They threw stones at the homes of Syrian refugees while some shops were also ransacked, and some cars burnt. This fascistic onslaught is a serious warning to workers in Turkey and all over the world.

The violence came after 18-year-old Emirhan Yalçın was reportedly stabbed to death in a knife fight with a group of refugees earlier that day. Two foreign nationals accused of “intentional homicide” had been arrested.

Ankara police said a total of 148 suspects were taken into custody on Thursday and Friday, suspected either of being involved in the attacks or of sharing provocative social media postings. However, many videos were shared on social media showing that the police did not interfere with the attackers during the violence.

The eruption of far-right attacks targeting immigrants and refugees is a result of the xenophobic sentiment incited by the all representatives of the Turkish ruling class, especially by the bourgeois opposition led by the Kemalist Republican People’s Party (CHP) and its far-right ally, the Good Party.

The attack came shortly after Bolu Mayor Tanju Özcan escalated his appeals to xenophobia, launching a far-right social media campaign targeting Syrians and Afghans. He announced that the water bill of foreign nationals, i.e., Syrians and Afghans in the city, will be increased tenfold.

After the attack, CHP leader Kemal Kılıçdaroğlu hypocritically warned against provocative actions: “I can see where this is going. I won’t allow the palace government to set the country on fire. We will solve this refugee problem; and of course, we will do it with common sense.”

However, Kılıçdaroğlu himself was recently blaming Syrian refugees for economic difficulties, saying: “There are serious complaints. People who can’t make ends meet and are unemployed complain about Syrians, and we may face much more serious dilemmas in the coming period as a society. We have to solve this problem.” In fact, their proposed solution is mass deportation.

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