A new political party has been formed in Austria consisting of men and women from a Turkish migrant background, but the organisers insist the party isn’t purely Turkish or Islamic.
The new party, called the “New Movement for the Future” (NBZ) was formed on 1 January this year in the Austrian region of Voralburg. Chairman Adnan Dincer, himself a migrant from Turkey, has told Austrian media that the party is currently looking at building up its internal structure so that it can field candidates in both local and national elections, Austria’s Kurier reports.
According to Mr. Dincer, the NBZ is not an Islamic party or a Turkish party, but claims it is a centre-right Austrian party that will be aiming to represent migrant issues and call themselves “a party for the forgotten”. In regard to the role of Islam in the party, which is largely made up of Turkish Muslims, Dincer said “religion is religion, politics is politics”.
According to the NBZ in a statement published on their Facebook page in August last year, the failed coup in Turkey in July was the catalyst for the formation of the group. The NBZ makes it clear that they support controversial Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan and condemn the Gülen movement, who the Turkish government says carried out the coup attempt.
The party blames Austrian Foreign Minister Sebastian Kurz for the lack of integration of Turks in Austria and slammed his comments made in the wake of the coup, when he said that migrants who weren’t loyal to Austria were welcome to leave the country. Kurz’s statement “can hardly be surpassed in his hostility of Turkey and its democracy,” they write.
The idea of migrants leaving the country is one the NBZ is not opposed to. They say that if Austria has a problem with the Turkish community, Austria can pay them to return to Turkey and that the NBZ would be open to such a proposal.
Since the failed coup in Turkey last year, the Turkish government has repeatedly attempted to crack down on opposition to President Erdoğan inside Turkey and in foreign countries.
Last week it was revealed that imams of the German-Turkish Islamic association DITIB had actively spied on Turkish nationals and sent information to the Turkish government on people they believed to be Gülen movement supporters.
One Turkish spy was even caught in Germany on a mission to assassinate two prominent opposition leaders in Germany and Belgium. In Turkey, Erdoğan has arrested journalists, opposition politicians, and others the Turkish government feel are a threat to the regime.