One of Turkey’s prestigious universities, namely Bogazici University, has been under attack of marginal leftist groups after a Professor teaching in another university was appointed as rector by President Erdogan. While Bogazici’s lecturers generally did not welcome the appointment, arguing that an academician from the university should have been selected, Turkish government opposed the self-privileged tradition and gave the seat to highly-qualified Professor Melih Bulu.
As soon as Bulu became rector, protests erupted against him. Seeing that he will not resign, marginal group backed by opposition parties tried to raid into the university. 159 protestors were detained in yesterday’s protests. After the release of 51 of them, 108 protestors remained under custody. Istanbul’s governor announced that only 7 protestors were students of Bogazici University while others were brought from different universities to join provocations. Estimates show that only 1% of Bogazici’s students joined protests.
Analysts say that some foreign-backed groups and opposition parties are trying a new Gezi-like uprising in the country. Particularly, LGBT groups seem to lead protests. A few LGBT members had insulted Ka’ba, Muslims’ holy place in Saudi Arabia, by putting their flags on a Ka’ba picture. Meanwhile, some pro-protests social media accounts disclosed the list of students that did not support protests and called lecturers not to give them reference letters.
Bogazici University was established by Americans and its rectors were American until 1970s. It acted like a private university despite belonging to the state. Turkish analysts say that Bogazici’s staff do not want to lose their privileges. On the other hand, some graduates told Straturka that lecturers were discriminating students and not allowing conservative ones to make an academic career.
Turkish government announced that it will not allow violent groups to take streets and will not change its decision about rector.