Is the Gülen Movement a claimant movement?

No. A claimant movement seeks to defend the advantages enjoyed by a separate group or to get a bigger piece of the “cake” of public funds or other resources for an underprivileged ethnic, religious, social or political group. The Gülen Movement does not do this, so it cannot be described as “claimant.”

The Gülen Movement does not mobilize for political participation in decision-making, nor does it fight against the state ideology, nor does it pretend to have a bias or tendency in order to get access to decision-makers. Movement participants have contributed to the opening-up of new channels for the expression of previously excluded demands like intercultural and interfaith dialogue and co-operation (rather than conflict) between civilizations. However, they do not in any way push their service outside the limits set by the existing norms and Turkish political system. They also do not seek to change the regime or the democratic parliamentary system or otherwise intervene in its decisions or actions. Not every public-spirited action is political or antagonistic; rather, there are social, cultural, cognitive, symbolic and spiritual dimensions of such action that can never entirely be translated into the language of politics.

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