24 November 2010

VS Naipaul withdraws from Turkish event after row over Islam comments

The Nobel laureate VS Naipaul has pulled out of a literary event opening in Istanbul tomorrow, after Turkish writers threatened a boycott because of deeply critical comments he has made on Islam.

The row erupted after Naipaul was invited to give the opening speech at the European Writers' Parliament (EWP), the brainchild of novelists Orhan Pamuk and José Saramago, which aims to bring together authors from across Europe to debate key issues of the contemporary literary scene and opens today. But several Turkish writers expressed outrage at the invitation, citing hostile comments Naipaul made about Islam nearly a decade ago.

[COMMENT] This is the Turkey that wants to join the EU? No thanks, we have enough 'outraged' muslims of our own without importing eighty million more. [guardian.co.uk] Read more