Turkey: Information on letters issued by the Canadian Alevi Culture Centre in Toronto, which attest that bearers are Alevis, including format, appearance, and signatories (2014-December 2015)
The information in this Response was provided by one of the two presidents of the Canadian Alevi Culture Centre in correspondence with the Research Directorate on 29 November 2015.
The Canadian Alevi Culture Centre is a not-for-profit organization located in Toronto, whose main purpose is to "protect cultural unity of the Alevi community living in Canada, to transfer [the Alevi] culture to new generations and to act as a single body when a need arises."
1. Appearance of Attestation Letters
There is only one standard format for letters issued by the Canadian Alevi Culture Centre for the purpose of attesting that the bearers are Alevis. These attestation letters are A4 typed letters and contain the following features:
- A reference number containing three letters followed by two or three digits;
- An embossed stamp situated on the left-hand side of the letter;
- The logo of the Canadian Alevi Culture Centre; and
- The inscription "Kanada Alevi Kültür Merkezi" in black, as well as the inscription "Canadian Alevi Culture Centre" in red.
The letters are signed at the bottom of the page by two signatories: the Director of Memberships (Mustafa Gilgil) on the right-hand side, and either of the two Presidents (Salman Vural or Ali Cobanoglu) on the left-hand side.
3. Issuing Procedures
In order to receive a letter, an individual must be a member of the Alevi Culture Centre and must request a letter from the Centre.
In order to become a member of the Alevi Culture Centre, an individual must first complete a form that is provided by the Centre, requiring, among others, the following information: name, birth date, birth place, father’s name, mother’s name, occupation, and names and telephone numbers of two references who are part of the Canadian Alevi Culture Centre. A sample of the Membership Application Form is attached to this Response.
The Canadian Alevi Culture Centre will contact both references to verify that they know the applicant and that they can attest to the status of the applicant as Alevi.
If both references confirm the aforementioned information, the applicant becomes a member of the Centre and can therefore request a letter attesting their status as Alevi.
If the applicant is not able to provide two references, the Canadian Alevi Culture Centre will contact Alevi organizations (in Canada or outside the country) with which the applicant claims affiliation (culture centres, places of worship, associations, etc.), in order to verify that he/she is indeed Alevi.
To become a member, the applicant must also pay an initial fee of C$50, as well as an annual fee of C$240.
4. Reference Letters
In addition to the attestation letters described in this Response, the Canadian Alevi Culture Centre also issues reference letters. These letters have been used by members of the Centre who are applying for the permanent resident status on humanitarian and compassionate grounds.
This Response was prepared after researching publicly accessible information currently available to the Research Directorate within time constraints. This Response is not, and does not purport to be, conclusive as to the merit of any particular claim for refugee protection. Please find below the list of sources consulted in researching this Information Request.
Canadian Alevi Culture Centre. 29 November 2015. Correspondence from the President to the Research Directorate.
Canadian Alevi Culture Centre. N.d. "Membership Application Form." Sent to the Research Directorate by the President on 29 November 2015.