Lithuania: Turkish agency aids Crimean, Karaim Turks

By Omer Tugrul Cam

ANKARA (AA) – Turkey's state-run aid agency distributed aid to elderly and needy Crimean and Karaim Turks in Lithuania.

The Turkish Cooperation and Coordination Agency (TIKA) said in a statement that it had so far provided support to more than 100,000 people in the Balkans and Eastern European countries.

In Lithuania, the agency reached about 1,000 people with the help of the Turkish Embassy in the capital Vilnius on Tuesday.

TIKA visited senior and low-income homes in eight regions to distribute aid packages.

The initiative was the first time Turkey delivered support to Karaims in Lithuania since the 14th century.

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TIKA is overseeing multiple social and cultural projects and programs for Crimean Turks in countries including Lithuania and Poland.

The Kaunas mosque, which is located in Lithuania's second-biggest city Kaunas, was restored by TIKA and opened for worship.

About 3,500 Crimean and Karaim Turks in the Baltic region reside in Lithuania. Crimean and Karaim Turks also live in Poland and Belarus.

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