September 2, 2011 - 17:44 AMT
PanARMENIAN.Net - Turkey’s Education Minister Ömer Dinçer had given his permission to allow Armenian children residing in Turkey as irregular immigrants to unofficially attend classes in Armenian schools in the next school year, Today's Zaman reported.
This comes shortly after Turkey announced it would return all property confiscated from religious minority foundations and associations during the early republican era. Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdoğan also approved the decision to let children from Armenia attend the schools as guest students.
“The ministry has given the necessary permission and we are very happy about this,” Deputy Patriarch Ateşyan stated.
He said the Armenian community has been fighting to allow irregular immigrants to attend Armenian schools for two years. According to Ateşyan, about 1,000 children from Armenia are living in Turkey with their parents, who have come for work but have no papers.
In another development, the International Russian School in Antalya, which follows the Russian Federation's education curriculum, started its school year on Sept. 1, when schools open in Russia. There are 70 Russian students in the school's elementary section. The school's principal, Victor Bikkenev, said the diplomas earned by the students in the school are valid in Russia. Classes are conducted in Russian at the school, which also offers Turkish, English and German classes.