"Have you ever seen a Muslim burn a Bible?"
Turkish folk singer Selda Bagcan let feathers fly Friday when she asked the world if anyone had ever seen a Muslim burn or tear up a Bible after a Koran was burned in Stockholm last week to protest Turkey's blockade of Sweden's admission to NATO.
"This incident is inexcusable. Have you ever seen a Muslim burn or tear a Bible? I have not and we never will," she said in an interview with the pro-government Turkish newspaper Sabah.
"They are really out of control. Europe portrays itself as civilized and calls others barbarians. But who is the barbarian now?" she said.
Bagcan's words were heavily criticized by social media users, who reminded her of the actions of ISIS in Syria, including the beheading of journalists and burning them alive, countless incidents of women being whipped and beaten in several Muslim countries, and Islamist attacks that killed dozens of innocent people celebrating the New Year in Bagcan's home country several years ago.
in 1993, thousands gathered outside a hotel in the central Turkish province of Sivas to protest against the artists and intellectuals who were meeting there for a celebration of the Alevi religious minority. After a blockade lasting several hours, the mob set fire to the hotel and burned 37 people alive, mostly Alevi intellectuals.
Bagcan herself wrote a song commemorating those killed in Sivas, which reads, "They are the oppressors, we are the oppressed / we are the ones who are crushed with fatwas."
Some users attribute her recent words to her age, others to the fact that the interview was with a pro-government newspaper.