Turkish Islamic scholar Fethullah Gülen has extended his condolences to the family and fans of Yaşar Kemal, one of Turkey's greatest writers, whose works were translated into 40 languages.
Gülen said in a written statement on Tuesday that Kemal built his life and works based on a "love of the homeland" and lived a life longing for a country where all religious and ethnic groups -- Turks, Kurds, Alevis, Sunnis -- could coexist in peace. The Islamic scholar recognized the Turkish literary giant as someone who made important contributions to the country's democratic culture in difficult times with his stance and speeches.
Kemal had been hospitalized in İstanbul since mid-January with respiratory and cardiac issues. His death on Feb. 28 was due to organ failure.
Kemal, who helped develop the "village novel," was a champion for the Anatolian heartland and those who lived there, recounting the many struggles of rural villagers. He is known for his lyrical approach and focus on social justice.
Gülen expressed his condolences to Kemal's wife, Ayşe Semiha Baban; his son, Raşit Gökçeli and other relatives, as well as to his many friends and fans.
Published on Today's Zaman, 03 March 2015, Tuesday