The Turkish ambassador to Austria, Ozan Ceyhun, has denied Kurdish-Austrian politician Berivan Aslan’s origins in an interview.
Ceyhun disagreed with the reporter, Adil Elmas, who referred to the Green Party’s MP and Kurdish politician Berivan Aslan among the “Turkish origin” politicians elected for the assembly.
Elmas, noted that 100 politicians were elected to the Vienna Federal Assembly. “Three of them are of Turkish origin,” Ceyhun said. When Elmas corrected the diplomat’s error, noting that there are actually “four Turkish-origin” assembly members, Ceyhun responded, “One of them doesn’t count herself as one of us, so I don’t want to comment on that, but there are three individuals who describe themselves as of Turkish origin”.
The Green Party’s Kurdish politician Aslan shared the footage on her official Twitter account, calling the incident a “scandal”. “Yet another diplomacy scandal. The ambassador keeps referring to me as ‘the other one.’ It’s shameful for a diplomat to use discriminating language!” wrote Aslan in her Twitter post on 29 November.
“Is it only when you are from the AKP (Justice and Development Party) or bow that you are of ‘Turkish origin’? Is this your diplomacy?” she asked. “Nobody and no state can take away the geography and origin of a person from them”.
The Kurdish MP also noted that “Turkish” does not mean “of Turkish origin”, “because there are many ethnic and religious groups living in Turkey. Since the Kurdish population does not have an official independent state, there is the classification of Kurds of Turkish origin. For years, I have noticed that people close to the AKP demean me in their language as ‘the green one’ or ‘the other’. It is remarkable that men are always mentioned and I as the only woman am not