Turkey: survey shows majority want constitutional secularism

After Erdogan's party proposed banning loyalty oath to Ataturk

22 November, 17:59

(ANSAmed) - ANKARA, NOVEMBER 22 - A majority of Turks do not want Premier Recep Tayyip Erdogan to erode the secularist legacy of nation-founder Mustafa Kemal Ataturk as enshrined in the nation's constitution, a Konda Research Institute survey showed on Thursday.

According to the survey commissioned by the Turkish Economic and Social Studies Foundation (TESEV), 82% of respondents want Ataturk's principles preserved in the constitution, and 50.6% said secularism should remain in the constitution with no alterations. Another 47% said they want secularism maintained, with further specifications on the relations between religion and state, and just 8.7% said they want it purged from the constitution entirely. However, 76.3% agreed that public employees should be allowed to wear Islamic veils if they so choose.

A week ago, Erdogan's Justice and Development Party (AKP) proposed that lawmakers should no longer be required to swear loyalty to Ataturk's principles and the secular republic when taking their oath of office, fueling opposition fears that Erdogan has an ''occult agenda'' of Islamization. (ANSAmed).

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