The Third General Assembly in the Ninth Executive Term of the Federation of Islamic Organisations in Europe (FIOE) was held in the period 17-20 May 2012 in Istanbul, with the participation of the Federation leadership, and representatives from member organisations in the majority of European States. The General Assembly studied the developments in the work of the Federation for the 2010-2014 Executive Term, and discussed the performance of the Federation, and its bodies and institutions. The Assembly expressed its hope that the accomplishments achieved would provide momentum, driving further developments in positive efforts and initiatives. The Assembly also deliberated on the European situation, and the state of affairs of Muslims on this Continent, along with other related concerns and issues, including developments in European affairs, and the present state of fundamental rights, and religious and civil liberties. The General Assembly also discussed the means to widen the area of cooperation and coordination in Europe, while reinforcing participation in societal dialogue. The Assembly emphasised the importance of developing the human resources and capacities of the Federation and its institutions, corresponding to its aspirations of supporting social peace and mutual understanding. The Assembly called for the advancement of cooperation in noble undertakings and piety between Europe’s Muslims, as groupings, organisations, and individuals, in a way that aids improving their reality, and fulfilling the responsibilities they carry, by virtue of citizenship, and in serving the public good of European countries and societies. The Assembly stressed the importance of redoubling efforts in caring for the needs of younger Muslim generations, with the required projects, programmes, and initiatives. The Assembly warned against the phenomenon of incitement against Muslims in the heat of election competition, through campaigns, postures, and statements that fan hatred and lack responsibility. Moreover, the Assembly pointed to the obligations falling on the shoulders of officials and political leaders in European states, in confronting this phenomenon, respecting cultural and religious diversity, and encouraging the culture of harmony. The constituents of society must reinforce cohesion and mutual understanding, in protecting human values and constitutional principles, showing the required courage in confronting incitement, which is divisive of society’s ranks for cheap aims. The Assembly considered that the increasing interest shown by Europe’s Muslims in social and political participation, and in satisfying the duties and rights of citizenship, is the ideal response to those voices that incite against them, or seek to isolate them from their societies.
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A Jerusalem Center for Public Affairs (JCPA) report extensively analyzed the role of Turkey and the Erdogan government in the June 2010 Gaza Flotilla that was involved in a violent altercation with Israeli naval forces. The report concluded:
The Gaza flotilla incident brought into sharp focus an even more significant long- term development: the growing relationship between the Erdogan government and the Global Muslim Brotherhood, which has given rise to some of the most notorious Islamist terrorist groups – from al-Qaeda to Hamas. Since 2006, Turkey has become a new center for the Global Muslim Brotherhood, while the Hamas regime in the Gaza Strip acted as the main axis for this activity
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The JCPA report documented many planning meetings for the flotilla that were held in Turkey.
A report on FIOE by the NEFA Foundation describes the organization as follows:
The Federation of Islamic Organizations in Europe (FIOE) claims to be an independent organization representing the interests of Muslims in Europe. In reality, the FIOE is an umbrella group that comprises the global Muslim Brotherhood in Europe. Strong links connect FIOE’s leadership central institutions and member organizations to the Brotherhood, as well as to Saudi Arabia. Funding for the FIOE is derived largely from Gulf sources, including some of the ruling families of the United Arab Emirates. The FIOE has strong ties to Hamas and Hamas fund-raising organizations, and some FIOE member organizations show evidence of links with Al-Qaida. The FIOE recently opened a headquarters office in Brussels and has had some success in positioning itself as a “dialog partner” for the EU and other important institutions.