Archpriest of the Assyrian Kırklar Church in Mardin, Rev. Gabriel Akyüz said that it would be appropriate the extend of the authorization of performing official marriage ceremony to the priests for Christian citizens as it is done to imams for Muslims.
Rev. Gabriel Akyüz said that there is no yet such a demand in this regard but that there could be a just and proper demand from Christian citizens. Archpriest Akyüz said “I think it would be a appropriate decision to give the Christians and other religious groups the same authority. We have a small community in the center of Mardin. We perform more than one religious ceremony every year, but we have many Christian citizens in the villages of Midyat region and we perform about forty marriages in one year over that city.”
“We had this right in the Ottoman period”
Akyüz continued saying: “During the Ottoman period, all the people had the right of performing marriage ceremonies according to their belief. I think in Turkey giving this authority to Christians would be a right decision.
“We are the citizens of Republic of Turkey and we it”
Akyüz stated “Every citizen is equal in front of the Constitution and the Civil Code of the Republic of Turkey. We need to be able to perform our marriage ceremonies properly. Because we are citizens of the Republic of Turkey. We will not go to another place and we will live here. We are trying to be good citizens. We love Turkey, we hope the authorities will hear our voice and do what is necessary.”