NEW YORK, Jan. 12, 2015 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- Hundreds of people staged a protest near the United Nations to raise awareness of what they call Fethullah Gulen and his Gulen Movement's attempts to subversively overthrow the elected government of Turkey. Mr. Gulen, a former imam, is the cultural and spiritual leader of the Movement. The protestors also highlighted how the Gulen Movement is misusing US taxpayers' money in its efforts and repeatedly violated US immigration laws to bring its own members illegally into the United States.
Adem Vatansever, one of the protest leaders stated, "Fethullah Gulen and his Movement are attempting to stage a coup against Turkey's fairly elected government. They use subversive means within Turkey and in the United States to undermine Turkey's democracy." He went on to say, "We are here to say that elections matter in Turkey. We are against the Movement's shadow government."
Protestors also carried signs that highlighted the Movement's use of US taxpayer dollars and its efforts to illegally bring followers into the US to teach at its more than 120 charter schools. Currently, the Movement receives approximately $150 million a year in state and federal subsidies for its charter schools. The Federal Bureau of Investigation has launched several investigations against the Movement's use of tax dollars. As reported by the New York Times, some of the charter schools are funneling money into Turkish companies. The protestors say that money and those companies are being used to overthrow the elected Turkish government.
In the statement by Dr. Anthony Whitmore: "It is unfortunate and sad that there are people who will come to this country to mislead. When they mislead people, people tarnish all the goodness of the people who are here."
Other protestors took aim at the Movement's questionable tactics of bringing its Turkish followers into the U.S. illegally. Islom Shahbandarov says, "My family waited in line and legally immigrated into the United States. It is unfair and un-American for the Movement to try and circumvent U.S. immigration laws to bring their followers into this country illegally." Again, the Movement is under FBI investigation for illegally using taxpayer dollars on immigration related actions.
To learn more about the protests contact
No Shadow Government in Turkey Platform
SOURCE No Shadow Government