Turkey's highest religious authority now wants engaged couples not to hold hands.
"Islam does not allow it," said the authority, according to Turkish media.
In Turkey, it is not only "hands on the quilt" that apply to those who have not yet married. Also, the engaged must henceforth hold my hand.
It's Directorate of Religious Affairs (Diyanet) that now states that couples who are engaged should live according to "Islamic standards".
Diyanet warns that “In this period, it is not inconvenient for couples to meet and talk to get to know each other, if their privacy is considered. However, there could be undesired incidents with or without their families’ knowledge … such as flirting, cohabitating or being alone [with one another]. This encourages gossip and holding hands, which Islam does not allow,” the Diyanet said, responding to a public question, writes Hurriyet.
Diyanet, which has more than 100,000 employees, is the authority that sets the agenda for how Islam should be practiced in the open society.
When President Abdullah Gul visited the Diyanet in 2012, he said that the Department "undoubtedly has as one of its main tasks to teach our religion to our people in the most accurate, clear and concise manner and turn the people away from superstition."
Gül was the first Turkish president to visit the Diyanet in 33 years, wrote the World Bulletin.
It seems Turkey is taking a turn towards a more Islamic lane of the road. Hopefully it won't park on Saudi or ISIS Street, where also holding hands or showing affection in public are big no-no's.
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