x0x Turkish News for the week ending 28 September 2013
[This is a transcript of the news broadcast on 28 September 2013]
Courtesy of Turkish Radio Hour, producer of the
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* Turkey's main opposition leader Kemal Kilicdaroglu has once again slammed the government's policies, mocking Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan's repeated statements about his love for the green, reported the Dogan News Agency.
In a speech at an agricultural forum in the Thracian town of Luleburgaz, Mr. Kilicdaroglu argued that Mr. Erdogan had "betrayed" slain Libyan leader Moammar Gadhafi, saying the Turkish leader turned on his erstwhile Libyan ally just a few months after receiving a human rights award from the North African government.
"[Erdogan] received a $120,000 prize. He said he would distribute the money to relatives of slain soldiers. We asked him, to whom did you give the money? [There was no response]," the Republican People's Party head told the crowd.
"Especially when it comes to dollars, he loves green," Kilicdaroglu said.
Stressing that Gadhafi helped Turkey during the Turkish military's 1974 operation in Cyprus, Kilicdaroglu said Mr. Erdogan would not be able export democracy if there was none at home.
"I want every citizen who cares about the future of my country to do something: Convince someone who hasn't voted Republican People's Party during the last elections to vote Republican People's Party. Turkey needs to be repaired, to have a new face, a new government. A government that would lift it up to [the level of] modern civilization," Kilicdaroglu said.
* In related news, The Anatolia News Agency reported that the main opposition Republican People's Party has criticized the government's foreign policy for being "war-oriented," and said Turkey had no neighbors' doors left to knock on.
Speaking at a meeting in Istanbul, party leader Mr. Kemal Kilicdaroglu said Turkey's foreign policy "should be peace-oriented not war-oriented," reminding the audience of the words used by Mustafa Kemal Atatï¿½ï¿½ï¿½ï¿½rk, the founding member of the Turkish Republic, "peace at home, peace in the world" and "war is murder unless it is imperative."
"These are the words of people that were engaged in a war and who had paid the price," he added.
* The Dogan News Agency reported that Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan's official statement on the constitutional reform package is scheduled for 11 a.m. on Sept. 30 and will be attended by cabinet ministers.
Editor-in chiefs and bureau chiefs of written and visual media have also been invited to the press conference.
The reform package is seen as a crucial bid from the government, particularly to regain lost momentum on the Kurdish peace process initiated nine months ago.
Some reports have hinted that reforms will eliminate restrictions on languages other than Turkish, such as the lifting of a ban on letters used in the Kurdish alphabet ï¿½ï¿½ï¿½ï¿½ï¿½ï¿½ "q," "x" and "w" ï¿½ï¿½ï¿½ï¿½ï¿½ï¿½ as well as a cancelation of the ban on using languages other than Turkish by the parties in political activities.
Although many officials have issued cautious statements warning the package will not contain any reform which has not been on the agenda, Mr. Erdogan said the content would "surprise" more than one segment of the society.
"This package is the result of an 11-year process. But there will never be an end. Because this isn't simple mathematics or geometrics. This is an ongoing social and political process," Mr. Erdogan said September 26.
* Turkish President Abdullah Gï¿½ï¿½ï¿½ï¿½l has had conversation with his U.S. counterpart Barrack Obama in private during a lunch hosted by the United Nations General Secretary Ban Ki-Moon on September 24 for the honorary of delegation heads.
Sitting at the same table, two leaders had some time to talk despite the crowded gathering.
Meanwhile, accompanying President Gï¿½ï¿½ï¿½ï¿½l during his trip in New York, First Lady Hayrunnisa Gï¿½ï¿½ï¿½ï¿½l met with Michelle Obama at United Nations General Assembly First Ladies event at The Studio Museum in Harlem in New York.
President Gï¿½ï¿½ï¿½ï¿½l has expressed his support for the U.S.-Russian agreement for the destruction of Syria's chemical weapons arsenal in his speech at the United Nations General Assembly.
Turkish President Abdullah Gï¿½ï¿½ï¿½ï¿½l also met with Iran's newly-elected President Hassan Rouhani in New York Wednesday, discussing the regional topics and Syria.
According to diplomatic sources, the importance of the two country's roles in resolving regional issues was underlined during the meeting, saying cooperation between the countries should be strengthened to end the humanitarian plight in Syria.
* An explosion has rocked a missile factory in Ankara's Elmadag district. Two of the injured are in serious condition and were immediately transported to the hospital, The Anatolian News Agency reported.
Elmadag Mayor Gazi Sahin, however, told private broadcaster NTV that only one of the workers was seriously injured and that the other three had sustained light injuries.
All of those injured were workers at the factory, the report said.
* The Anatolia News Agency reported that Turkey's government is set to pass laws to "improve the investment environment," including regulations that will permit mining investments without waiting for environmental impact assessments, Economy Minister Zafer Caglayan said during a press meeting Sept. 27.
Mr. Caglayan said private sector representatives were planning to make big investments but that the environmental impact assessment process posed an obstacle against them.
The minister said they would not abandon their sensitivities toward the environmental impact assessment but added that they aimed to simplify and accelerate the process. According to the new regulation, operations can start before the assessment, while the environmental impact assessment can be arranged accordingly.
* The Turkish movie scene was active as ever this week:
The Anatolia News Agency reports that the Golden Boll festival has ended. Two films, Hakki Kurtulus and Melik Saracoglu's "Eye Am" and Mahmut Fazil Coskun's "Yozgat Blues". shared the awards. The festival takes place every year in Turkey's Mediterranean city of Adana. Read more at >> here <<
Renowned Turkish actor Tuncel Kurtiz died Sept. 27. He passed away in the morning after returning home from exercising, reports the Hurriyet Daily News. Kurtiz was 77 years old. Read more at >> here <<
Almost 40 movies including those awarded at prestigious world and Turkish festivals along with latest features from masters of cinema is being screened in Filmekimi, in Istanbul's October film event.
The films will later be screened in six other cities of Turkey. Read more at >> here <<
According to the Anatolia News Agency, financial issues are forcing organizers of the International Golden Orange Film Festival to vow more "modest" ceremonies for the event's golden anniversary this year, but Turkey's premier film event will still provide a fantastic platform for up-and-coming talent.
It will take place Oct. 4 and 11 in Turkey's southern province of Antalya, and it is the 50th year of the festival. Read more at >> here <<
A film titled "Mandrake the King of Wizards Pursues Kiling," which was one of 10,000 lost films in Turkish film before being re-found and restored, was screened at the Fantasturka Turkish Films Festival over the weekend, reports the Anatolia News Agency.
Also from the Anatolia News Agency:
The film was found in the basement of a house of a family involved with movie industry. It needed extensive cleaning.
The third "Film Festival Turco di Roma" (Rome Turkish Film Festival) started in the Italian capital September 26.
A total of 15 Turkish movies will be screened over the three days of the festival, which aims to focus on promoting contemporary Turkish film in Italy.
The cult Turkish film, "The Man Who Saved the World" ï¿½ï¿½ï¿½ï¿½ï¿½ï¿½ which is often "hailed" as one of the worst movies of all time ï¿½ï¿½ï¿½ï¿½ï¿½ï¿½ will soon be going in front of American audiences with English subtitles in California. Read more at >> here <<
* The Hurriyet Daily News correspondent Vercihan Ziflioglu reports that the Halki Greek Orthodox Seminary symbolically opened its doors for a historic concert on Istanbul's Heybeliada Island on Sept. 22.
The concert, titled "A Cultural Trip from Greece to Turkey," in which musicians from Turkey and Greece performed for peace and friendship, marked a first for the Halki Seminary, as the school has been closed since 1971.
Professor Elpidophoros Lambriniadis, Halki Seminary's archpriest and Metropolitan of Bursa, told the Hurriyet Daily News that he hoped this celebration would prove to be a pre-celebration for the opening of the school.
The Halki Seminary, which was opened in 1844, served as a school of Greek-Orthodox theology until a 1971 Turkey's Constitutional Court ruling forced all private institutions of higher education to become part of state universities. Halki's board of trustees refused to become part of Istanbul University, an offer made by the Turkish state in accordance with the ruling. Consequently, the seminary section of Halki School was closed down. The high school section is still open, but no longer has students.
According to the Anatolia News Agency Neset Ertas, known respectfully as a "folk bard", is being commemorated a year after his death with a number of events across the country.
An old governor's mansion in his hometown, the Central Anatolian province of Kirsehir, has been renovated and reopened as a museum today to celebrate the life and art of the Turkish folk music composer, singer and baglama virtuoso.
During the memorial events in Kirsehir, Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan and famous Turkish singers Orhan Gencebay, Ibrahim Tatlises, Bedia Akarturk and Ahmet Ozhan performed Ertas's renowned song "Gonul Dagi" , Soul Mountain, on stage together.
* The 23rd Akbank Jazz Festival started with Malia on September 25 and will continue until October 12th.
According to the Hurriyet Daily News other names that will appear at the festival are Cassandra Wilson, Harriet Tubman, Enrico Rava, Mare Nostrum and Nicholas Payton, Mos Def, Mulatu Astatke, Sex Mob, Lost Fingers, Jehan Barbur featuring Ilhan Ersahin and Jim Rotondi.
Fishermen by Ara Guler
* Photographer Ara Guler's exhibition, "Istanbul in My Memoirs," has opened in Brussels as part of the Turkey-European Union Intercultural Art Dialogues project.
Guler is a master, who has witnessed a historic 80-year period in Turkish history. When talking about himself he says he considers himself lucky that events in his shots came across him at the right time. Describing the life an empty film roll given to the people, Guler advises us to try to fill each moment in an excellent manner that will guide us for many years.
Read more at >> here <<
* Artinternational Istanbul, a new three-day contemporary art fair in the city, ended on Sept. 18 with a sale of artworks worth 21 million euros in total, reports the Hurriyet Daily News.
According to a written statement issued by the fair organizers, the fair was visited by more than 1,500 collectors and art traders, as well as 15,000 visitors. The figures indicate that the fair will be one of the most popular fairs in the art world over the next few years.
More than 300 artists from 62 galleries participated in the fair.
* Istanbul's inter-disciplinary art festival 12th Pera Fest started on September 22 and hails Gezi Park. Gezi is the park environmentalist were trying to protect from being raised in June unrests.
The main theme of the festival will be "Arts and Politics." The festival director will be Vecdi Sayar and attendance at the events will be free of charge.
The festival events will be at different art centers around the district of Beyoglu. The festival started with concerts by the bands, Gezici Muzisyenler Platform "Teneke Trampet" and "Siya Siyabend."
The festival will host many seminars and forums for artists and art lovers. There will also be numerous theater plays.
Read more at >> here <<
* According to the Anatolia News Agency, spending on cultural activities and preservation in Turkey has grown by leaps and bounds in the past 10 years, according to a survey conducted by the Turkey-Europe Education and Scientific Research Foundation.
Archaeological excavations in Turkey have doubled in the last 10 years, up from 57 in 2002 to over 100 this year.
The report indicated that the number of museum visitors increased fourfold from 7.4 million in 2002 to 28.4 million over the past decade
Another factor that has influenced the upbeat results is that the budget allocated to the Culture and Tourism Ministry increased by a quarter to over $271 million over the last two years.
The ministry also increased financial support to the film industry, which already had a presence in Europe, but has prospered more recently in the Arab world. While financial support for the film industry from 1990 to 2004 was $5.7 million, the figure has reached a total of $108.4 million over the last seven years.
* Elio Montanari, an Italian photographer and architect, living in Istanbul, is exhibiting his photographs at Istanbul's SALT Galata, .
Montanari's photographs are of hundreds of artists producing, installing and rehearsing their works for major art events and exhibitions around the world.
Montanari covers the period starting from the early 1980s up until 2005.
His exhaustive personal archive, housed in Fener in Istanbul, comprises over 500,000 negatives and slides. They capture intimate moments shared with artists forming their work while supported by assistants, curators and peers.
Read more at >> here <<
* Istanbul Modern Museum is installing touch-screen panels around Istanbul in an effort to make art more visible throughout society as part of a wider project titled "Istanbul Tourism's New Attraction: Contemporary Art", reports the Anatolia News Agency.
Read more at >> here <<
* The Naval Museum in Istanbul's Besiktas neighborhood, where renovation works have been ongoing since 2007, will reopen its doors on Oct. 4, reports the Anatolia News Agency.
The museum, the biggest of its kind in Turkey, is home to 20,000 artworks and archives of 20 million documents.
The most treasured piece of the museum is the world's oldest galliot.
Read more at >> here <<
* Turkey's one and only stove museum opened at the beginning of the year in Antalya. The Stove Museum displays historic stoves from Turkey and around the world, bringing in visitors.
So far, around 17,000 people have visited the location, according to municipal officials.
The museum not only displays antique heating implements, but also literature on them: there are for example, poems by renowned poets.
Read more at >> here <<
* According to the Hurriyet Daily News, one of Istanbul's oldest high schools, Istanbul Lise, is attracting visitors, researchers and scholars interested in its historical architectural features.
The building was designed by architect Alexandre Vallaury.
Mr. Vallaury was a French-ottoman architect, who founded architectural education and lectured in the School of Fine Arts in Istanbul. He was born in 1850 in Istanbul.
Mr. Vallaury combined the traditional Ottoman architecture with the elements of Beaux-Arts architecture in his designs of buildings.
The building of the high school was constructed in 1897.
Not only there are visitors attracted two the building, but also many TV series and movies are also being shot at the building.
Read more at >> here <<
* The story of young Turkish TV actor Murat Yildirim's life will be told in a book, to be published by UNESCO. The funds raised by book will be donated to children with leukemia.
Yildirim is known for his assistance he provided to Turkey's (Foundation for Children with Leukemia) charity.
The biography will be written by Greek advocate Liana Nikolaidou and writer Marielen Benekou. Marielen Benekou said the book would be titled "Murat Yildirim ï¿½ï¿½ï¿½ï¿½ï¿½ï¿½ Bridge of Culture."
* Turkey's helter-skelter drive to pave the country in concrete could sound the death knell for the nation's priceless archaeological heritage, according to archaeological specialist Nezih Basgelen, reports the Hurriyet Daily News correspondent, Barcin Yinanc.
They are dynamiting everywhere. Work machines are working like a bull in a china shop," he recently told the Hurriyet Daily News. "We are losing our archaeological repositories while constructing damns, highways and factories."
The region in which we live has hosted many civilizations which shaped humanity from the early ages on, Mr. Basgelen adds.
Read more at >> here <<
* According to the Anatolia News Agency, Professor Latife Summerer who teaches at Germany's Munich University moved to Turkey to concentrate on the excavations being carried out at the ancient city of Pompeiopolis.
Pompeiopolis rivals renowned Ephesus in the ancient structures that it is revealing.
Summerer said that Pompeiopolis was one of the seven cities founded by Roman general Pompeus Magnus in the Pontus and Paphlagonia region. The area is now in Turkey's Black Sea region, in Kastamonu province.
She said that she first came to the region in 2006 upon the invitation of Taskopru Municipality and there were no ancient remains in the area in those years.
Read more at >> here <<
* The first international conference on the ancient city of Kanesh at Kultepe took place in the Turkish Capital Ankara.
Excavations at the ancient city started in 1948 and are still ongoing. Nearly 25,000 tablets and many artifacts have been unearthed so far.
4000 years ago it had a large merchant quarter, from where trade took place with all of the Middle East.
Read more at >> here <<
* An almost nine-meter long lion-headed Egyptian goddess Sekhmet has been revived in the Red Basilica in the largest structure of Turkey's ancient city of Pergamon in Izmir's Bergama district, and opened to visits on Sept. 26.
EXCHANGE RATE for the U.S. dollar in Turkish Liras: 2.03
High and Low Temperatures in Degrees F, Weather
Ankara, in central Turkey: 77/52 Partly Cloudy
Antalya, on the Mediterranean: 81/66 Mostly Sunny
Istanbul, in northwestern Turkey: 77/64 Partly Cloudy
Izmir, on the Aegean: 84/64 Partly Cloudy
Trabzon, on the Black Sea: 72/57 Showers
Van, in Eastern Turkey: 70/39 Partly Cloudy
Black Sea measured at Trabzon 73
Marmara Sea measured at Tekirdag 68
Aegean Sea measured at Izmir 75
Mediterranean Sea measured at Antalya 81
* Premiere Soccer League
* Results for week: 5
Karabuk Sp - Erciyes Sp 0 - 0
Akhisar Sp - G. Antep Sp 2 - 0
Konya Sp - G. Birligi 1 - 0
Sivas Sp - Kasimpa$a 1 - 2
Fenerbahce - Elazig Sp 4 - 0
Eski$ehir Sp - Antalya Sp 2 - 1
Rize Sp - Bursa Sp 2 - 1
Be$iKta$ - G. Saray -
Kayseri Sp - Trabzon Sp 0 - 1
* In games played so far this weekend: 6
Bursa Sp - Akhisar Sp 0 - 0
G. Saray - Rize Sp 1 - 1
G. Antep Sp - Karabuk Sp 3 - 0
* Standing in the league as of week ending 5
1 - Be$ikta$ 12
2 - Fenerbahce 12
3 - Rize Sp 12
4 - Akhisar Sp 9
5 - Kasimpa$a 9
6 - Trabzon Sp 9
7 - Karabuk Sp 8
8 - Eski$ehir Sp 7
9 - Elazig Sp 7
10 - G. Saray 6
11 - Sivas Sp 6
12 - Konya Sp 6
13 - Erciyes Sp 5
14 - G. Birligi 4
15 - Kayseri Sp 4
16 - Bursa Sp 4
17 - Antalya Sp 3
18 - G. Antep Sp 1
* According to the Hurriyet Daily News, Besiktas will play four matches behind closed doors after the Turkey's Professional Football Discipline Committee handed the team a harsh punishment for a pitch invasion by the fans during a home derby game against Galatasaray at Istanbul's Atatï¿½ï¿½ï¿½ï¿½rk Olympic Stadium over the weekend.
The committee also fined Besiktas 70,000 Turkish Liras, while coach Slaven Bilic, who was sent off in injury time moments before dozens of spectators jumped onto the field, was banned for three games for allegedly insulting the referee.
* In related news, the Turkish government is mulling ways to convince UEFA over the authorization of police officers to oversee the security at games, as part of its new plan to tighten security measures in the wake of the eventful Besiktas - Galatasaray derby.