World Bulletin / News Desk
Speaking at the presidential complex in the capital Ankara, Recep Tayyip Erdogan decried the growing trend of ethnocentrism, cultural racism, and Islamophobia in Western countries.
“Europe is turning into an open-air prison,” he told a entrepreneurship certificate ceremony of the Islamic Cooperation Organization's Women's Advisory Council.
"We are witnessing a different atmosphere in the Western world," he added.
“The room in Europe for people with different outer appearances, religions, languages, and skin colors to live is shrinking.”
Erdogan also stated that headscarf bans are growing increasingly widespread on the continent.
He also touched on recent debates over “moderate Islam.”
“Countries that do not let women drive cannot talk about moderate Islam”, Erdogan said.
On the plight of the Muslim Rohingya, the president said: “Unfortunately, most Muslim countries don’t care about the Rohingya”.
Since Aug. 25, over 613,000 Rohingya have crossed from Myanmar's western state of Rakhine into Bangladesh, according to the UN.
The refugees are fleeing a military operation in which security forces and Buddhist mobs have killed men, women and children, looted homes and torched Rohingya villages. According to Bangladeshi Foreign Minister Abul Hasan Mahmood Ali, around 3,000 Rohingya have been killed in the crackdown.
Turkey has been at the forefront of providing aid to Rohingya refugees, and President Recep Tayyip Erdogan has raised the issue at the UN.
The UN documented mass gang rapes, killings -- including of infants and young children -- brutal beatings, and disappearances committed by security personnel. In a report, UN investigators said such violations may have constituted crimes against humanity.