Turkish teachers seek colleague’s recovery

Turkish teachers seek colleague’s recovery

QUETTA: Former teachers of Pak-Turk schools have expressed serious concern over the recent kidnapping of their colleague from Lahore, demanding that the Turkish family be recovered immediately.

Speaking at a press conference here on Thursday, educationists Osman and Navida Arslanhan said that the Turkish staff running the Pak-Turk institutions had been living in Pakistan under the UNHCR’s protection as asylum seekers since November 2016.

“We have been staying in Pakistan with asylum seeker certificates issued by the UNHCR,” said Mr Arslanhan, adding that the Turkish government had introduced legal cases against the educationists and they did not have valid Pakistani residence permits or visas to apply for a teaching post in another country.

They said that the abduction of the Turkish educationist along with his family was a very serious matter and the situation had created unrest among the Turkish staff who were not teaching anymore since the Turkish government registered cases against them.

“Throughout the 22 years of service, we have not been involved in any illegal or detrimental activity and we brought shame to neither Pakistan nor Turkey,” Mr Arslanhan said.

They said that with effect from the end of November 2016, Turkish educationists had to sever their ties with Pak-Turk educational institutions and were no longer allowed to work there.

They urged the government to trace their abducted colleague and his family immediately, while asking the authorities to ensure their safety till their asylum seeker certificates were valid.

Published in Dawn, September 29th, 2017

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