The muezzin’s call echoes across Ankara. Five days a week, “Allahu Akbar” (God is great) calls emerge through the loudspeakers in the Turkish capital’s mosques. They are well heard in the Israeli Embassy and in the new ambassador’s home as well. For the Muslim country’s 80 million residents, it’s an inseparable part of life and a matter of religious significance, which is why the Turks were so upset by Israel’s Muezzin Bill.
The issue was even raised in a recent phone call between President Reuven Rivlin and Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan, in which Rivlin thanked the Turks for sending firefighting aircraft to Israel in the latest spate of fires. Erdogan requested that initiatives related to the Muslims’ freedom of worship be considered with all due sensitivity. Perhaps he knew that Rivlin was against the bill as well and found a sympathetic ear with the Israeli president.
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