Turkish Cypriot press reported on Wednesday that according to statements by the chairman of religious employees’ trade union, Suleyman Cakar and the chairman of the religious affairs department, Talip Atalay, there was a lack of imams in many mosques in the north at a time when the construction of mosques in the breakaway regime was increasing.
Cakar said that 220 imams used to work in the north of whom 19 are now retired while 40 more who came from Turkey had returned. Only 10 imams that are to come from Turkey will replace the 40 who left and this would create problems for the operation of mosques.
Atalay said he supported the appointment of Turkish Cypriots graduate from religious schools in order to solve the problem and to meet the unemployment of the Turkish Cypriots imams.
According to the media, due to an agreement with Turkey, all the imams working in the north should come from Turkey.