MOURNERS were told they were "not welcome" by a cleric at a former policeman's funeral because they were non-Muslims.
The family of Erdinc Ozen, a former police officer and member of the navy reserves, are demanding an apology following the incident at Sydney's Auburn Gallipoli Mosque last month.
Mr Ozen, a Turkish-born Australian who served as a policeman until 2011, died from a brain aneurysm last month.
His brother Tunc said a number of senior police and friends from his fishing club at the Seven Hills-Toongabbie RSL left the service after the unexpected directive from acting president Dr Abdurrahman Asaroglu. Others attending included an 87-year-old World War II veteran and former NSW premier Nathan Rees.
"He told everyone it's a Muslim prayer service, all women and non-Muslims were not welcome and they had to leave the mosque area," Tunc Ozen said.