Turkish gov't real estate allocations to Diyanet hit record high

1,281 immovables were allocated in 2018 to Turkey's Directorate of Religious Affairs, which constantly asks for more despite huge budget
Wednesday, 27 March 2019 13:16

The number of real estates allocated by the General Directorate of Foundations reached a record high in 2018. Within the last year, 1281 immovables were allocated to Turkey's Directorate of Religious Affairs (Diyanet) in a year, which had 814 immovables before. 

According to Nurcan Gökdemir from Birgün daily, the number of allocated immovables, which was 468 in 2015, 779 in 2016 and 814 in 2017, reached a record level in 2018.

In the past years, the allocations were mostly made to professional chambers, foundations, and associations, while the first place getting the most of the allocations has been Diyanet. 327 allocations were made to professional chambers and associations. Ministry of National Education got 201 immovables, municipalities got 123 and the Ministry of Health got 4 immovable allocated in 2018.

Turkish government's support for Diyanet has consistently been growing with the shares of the institution from the state budget, its widespread organization throughout the country and the increasing number of personnel.

The budget allocated to the Diyanet has increased massively under the ruling Justice and Development Party, as the Ministry continues to give fatwas on government demand, interferes in political issues, and backs the Sunni Islamism of the ruling political power in Turkey, as it promotes religious practices in all sphere of life.

Turkey's Religious Affairs will have an even greater share of the government's budget within the next five years, as its new strategic plan for the years of 2017-2021 is to ‘‘be a source of inspiration for religious organizations both in the west and in the Islamic world’’.