'Virus' of Islamophobia making Europe a prison for Muslims: Turkish president

Turkish president Recep Tayyip Erdogan

© APA | Turkish president Recep Tayyip Erdogan

# 13 May 2021 00:39 (UTC +04:00)

The disease of Islamophobia is making Europe into an open-air prison for the millions of Muslims living there, warned Turkey’s president on Wednesday, APA reports citing Anadolu.

"The virus of Islamophobia, which is as dangerous as the coronavirus, is spreading rapidly, especially in European countries," said Recep Tayyip Erdogan, speaking in the Turkish capital Ankara.

The situation in Europe became alarming, and has turned into a serious security risk for Muslims living there, he said at a competition on reading the Quran.

Telling how nearly 35 million Muslims are living in Europe – including almost 6 million with roots in Turkey – he said the continent "is increasingly turning into an open-air prison for our brothers and sisters."

Turkey is recent years has sounded the alarm on rising Islamophobia in Europe, decrying incidents of violence and discrimination against Muslims as well as the rise of Islamophobic politicians and parties.