Prominent Community Member’s Funeral Brings Turkish Diaspora Together

Turkish people started to immigrate to Germany following a labor agreement between Ankara and Bonn in 1961. Yusuf Topcu arrived in Germany in 1962 and he was one of the first Turks whom moved to there to search for better financial conditions. After a few years in Germany, Yusuf Topcu and his friends managed to secure a permission from Vatican to hold Aid Al-Fitr prayer at the Cologne Cathedral. It was an historic moment for both Turkish community and the Catholic world. Topcu at 83 years old passed away on Monday and his funeral brought together all parts of Turkish diaspora.

The 83 year old’s funeral held at the Central Mosque in Cologne which also serves as the headquarters of DITIB, biggest Turkish-Muslim NGO in Germany operating more than 900 mosques through out the country. Head of DITIB, Kazim Turkmen, led the prayer. Representatives from IGMG and ATIB were also present.

Yusuf Topcu at the hospital days before he passed away

Turkmen said during his preach that the existence of Central Mosque and others were made possible like Yusuf Topcu and other first Turkish community members whom earlier immigrated to Germany.

Aid prayer in 1965 at the Cologne Cathedral had been pernitted by Vatican but there were some troubles both in Vatican and Cologne after the prayer. Yusuf Topcu said in his last interview that Cologne Police chief and some officials were removed after the they held Aid prayer at one of the most sacred places of Catholic belief.

The decision to carry out crusades to Anatolia was taken at Cologne Cathedral. “They came to Anatolia to scrap Islam from the face of the earth but we managed to pray at the very cathedral,” said during an interview with Turkey’s TRT. He also reiterated that Germany owes big parts of its post WW2 economic boom to Turkish immigrants.

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