Last week on June 29, we received a letter from Andrzej Papiers, Consul General of Poland in İstanbul concerning a news article published in Daily Sabah, a day before the letter arrived. We thank the Consul General for his letter and publish it here in accordance with the right to reply:
"As Consul General of the Republic of Poland in Istanbul, I was deeply touched by the information presented in the article "Muslim schoolgirls report racial abuse while on trip in Poland," published on June 28, 2017, in the Internet version of Daily Sabah. Therefore, I immediately took steps to verify the described events.
I urgently turned to the Ministry of the Interior and Administration of the Republic of Poland and the Provincial Police Command in Lublin. Both institutions treated the case as a priority. I immediately obtained detailed information regarding the alleged incident, which I would like to share with the readers of the Daily Sabah.
The Provincial Police Command in Lublin initiated investigative procedures that did not confirm the events described in the article. The same conclusion applies to other cities in Poland.
Police officers in Lublin secured and analyzed CCTV footage from the location where one of the described events allegedly took place on June 21, 2017. The recordings produced no evidence of incidents involving foreigners. There was not a single report filed to any of the police stations in the area by participants of the described trip and their supervisor. Furthermore, no official notice has been made regarding the case, despite the fact that the group from Germany was staying in Poland for a longer period of time and their supervisor was a fluent Polish speaker.
The police did not receive any video or photo materials, which would document the incidents presented in the media. The group did not file any complaint against the actions taken by the Polish police.
It should be noted that Lublin has been hosting the UEFA EURO U21 football tournament since the middle of June this year. As a result, the number of police patrols throughout the country has been significantly increased. The safety of the arriving football fans and the city population is a top priority for the police. It is worth emphasizing that during this period, including June 28, police officers did not receive any signals about disturbing incidents with the participation of foreigners, including groups from Germany.
We live in an era of rapid information transfer, but unfortunately, it is increasingly used to manipulate the public. That is why it is in our common interest to respond accordingly to all manifestations of actions aiming to mislead the public opinion of both our countries, bound by historically friendly bilateral relations.
At the end, I would like to emphasize that Poland prides itself on its centuries-old tradition of tolerance, whose beneficiaries were also my Turkish ancestors, who, according to memories kept by my family, arrived from the Ottoman Empire in the XVI century and settled 70 km from Lublin.
Consul General of Poland in Istanbul"
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