ISTANBUL—Garo Paylan, an Armenian member of the Turkish parliament representing the People’s Democratic Party (HDP) has sounded an alarm on the fate of minorities living in Turkey, including the Armenian community.
Speaking after vandals targeted several Alevi home in Eastern Turkey, Paylan said told Al-Monitor that minorities in Turkey could “again be pawns of shadowy forces that seek to exploit the country’s current discontents.”
“They [minorities] remember what happened to their grandparents, or even their mothers and fathers, and they know that it is in the current environment, crimes can occur,” he told Al-Monitor.
“Some powers use minorities as a form of manipulation against each other [knowing] that people are biased against these groups,” he said.
Late last week week, vandals painted red “X”s on 13 houses in the predominantly Alevi district of Cemal Gursel in Malatya, where Paylan’s grandparents are from and currently is known as a conservative city with 800,000 residents.
Two days after the Alevi homes were vandalized, an Armenian church association was pelted with stones when the office was empty.
Local police have yet to investigate these incidents.
Malatya is home to about a few dozen Armenians. Before the Genocide, one-third of the city’s residents were Armenian.