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x0x Turkish news for week ending 05 April 2008

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  • Turkish Culture List
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    Message 1 of 1 , Apr 7, 2008
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      x0x Turkish news for week ending 05 April 2008

      [Best when viewed with the courier font.]


      A service of the TURKISH RADIO HOUR, producer of:

      Saturdays at 6:00 P.M.
      KUSF FM 90.3, San Francisco

      Also tune to

      Tuesdays at 10:00 P.M.

      Ahmet Toprak edited today's news. Your host is Merter Bozkurt

      For a subscription to the Internet edition of this news,
      send a blank email to:


      * Ever since the founding of the Turkish Republic there
      had been some willing to exploit religious issues, the
      commander of Turkey's armed forces said Friday, reports
      the Turkish private channel NTV.
      Reactionary circles continue their anti-secular
      actions through legal associations and foundations in
      Turkey and abroad, General Yasar Buyukanit said in an
      exclusive interview published in the April issue of the
      Turkish Defense and Aviation Magazine.
      Another major threat to the country was posed by the
      terrorist group the Kurdistan Workers Party, which
      aimed to destroy the nation-state and its unitary
      structure, he said.

      * Referring to the decision by Turkey's Constitutional
      Court to hear a case filed by a senior prosecutor
      alleging the the ruling Justice and Development Party
      had worked to subvert the secular regime in Turkey,
      State Department spokesperson Tom Casey said that US
      hopes case will be apolitical.
      "What we would expect and hope from this process is
      that those involved would proceed in a way that was
      apolitical and that reflected the commitment to
      representative democracy that's been expressed by the
      Turkish voters in recent elections," Mr. Casey said.
      On Monday, Turkish Constitutional Court voted to
      accept the indictment against the Justice and
      Development Party, 70 of its leading members and
      President Abdullah Gul.
      The prime minister Mr. Recep Tayyip Erdogan, who is
      one of the defendants, said the case is a problem for
      all of Turkey. He added that his party would remain
      committed to the rule of law and maintain its
      democratic position.
      In related news, the Turkish daily Milliyet reports
      that Turkey-European Union joint parliamentary
      commission co-chair Joost Lagendijk said that the case
      seeking the closure of the ruling Justice and
      Development Party should be blocked.
      Mr. Lagendijk suggested that the Turkish government
      should submit a comprehensive reform package to prevent
      such party closures.
      Mr. Lagendijk was speaking at a conference in
      Istanbul, Turkey.

      * Private Turkish channel NTV reports that Belgian
      police have raided a building in the east of the
      country believed to have been used by the underground
      organization Kurdistan Workers Party and detained
      around 40 women on Friday.
      According to the Belgian broadcaster RTL, those
      detained by police were taking part in a training camp.
      The raid on a Kurdish cultural center in the town of
      Verviers also resulted in police seizing a quantity of
      documents, the local media said.
      The raids come after a ruling on Thursday by the
      European Court of First Instance that the Kurdistan
      Workers Party's inclusion on the European Union list of
      groups involved in terrorist activities was not
      properly justified.
      However, Joost Lagendijk, the co-chair of the
      European Union-Turkey Joint Parliament Committee,
      subsequently said the Council of the European Union had
      placed the Kurdistan Workers Party on the list and the
      European Court of Justice's decision will not change
      this list.
      As we have been reporting to you over the years, the
      Kurdistan Workers Party is mainly active in Turkey's
      Southeast, attacking military and civilian targets
      In addition to the European Union, the U.S. and NATO
      classifies the Kurdistan Workers Party as a terrorist

      * According to NTV, inflation is up in Turkey, the
      latest report by the Turkish Board of Statistics
      indicates. The Central Bank of Turkey is blaming food
      and fuel price hikes for the rising inflation.
      According to the Board of Statistics, annualized
      consumer price inflation was 9.2 percent in March and
      the wholesale prices inflation 10.5 percent.
      There is some good news about the Turkish economy,
      however: The Turkish daily Turkiye reports that Turkish
      Exporters Assembly announced that Turkey's export
      revenues increased by 36 percent this January to March
      period and reached $31.4 billion.
      The twelve-month export figures increased by 27
      percent and reached $114 billion.

      * Turkey has turned down a call from the US to send
      combat troops to Afghanistan, Turkish President
      Abdullah Gul said Wednesday, reports NTV.
      Turkey has twice lead the International Stability and
      Assistance Force based in Kabul but its operations were
      mainly limited to the area around Afghan capital.
      As we reported to you last week, the Turkish
      government previously said it would consider sending
      troops to Afghanistan to take part in the US-led
      coalition there, despite Turkish armed forces' top
      commander General Yasar Buyukanit saying Turkey could
      not spare the men due to the ongoing anti-terrorist
      operations being conducted inside Turkey.

      * The Turkish daily Turkiye reports that Turkey's
      President Abdullah Gul accompanied by defense minister
      Mr. Vecdi Gonul attended the NATO meeting in Bucharest,

      * Turkish prime minister Mr. Recep Tayyip Erdogan
      accompanied by state minister Sait Yazicioglu, industry
      and trade minister Zafer Caglayan, and interior
      minister Besir Atalay visited Sweden at the invitation
      of his Swedish counterpart Fredrik Reinfeldt.
      Addressing Sweden's International Relations
      Institute, Mr. Erdogan said that his government places
      great importance on Turkey's European Union membership
      Stressing that Turkey's reform process will continue
      decisively, the prime minister said the inclusion of
      Turkey in the enlargement of the European Union will
      strengthen the Union.
      On Thursday the Turkish prime minister spoke at a
      Turkey-Sweden business forum.
      In addition to talking more about the candidacy of
      Turkey for the European Union membership, the prime
      minister emphasized the importance of cooperation and
      solidarity between Turkey and Sweden.

      * Another good news on bringing the divided island of
      Cyprus back together: The Turkish daily Cumhuriyet
      reports that officials of the Turkish Republic of
      Northern Cyprus and Greek Cypriot administration
      reopened the Lokmaci Gate between the capitals of the
      two countries to crossings in both directions.
      The move followed negotiations with the UN and is
      hoped to herald new talks to resolve the issue of the
      divided island, Cumhuriyet added.

      * Turkey has added its voice to the growing groundswell
      of criticism being directed at a film produced by Dutch
      parliamentarian Geert Wilders that seeks to depict
      Islam as a faith of violence and repression, reports
      the Turkish channel NTV.
      On Wednesday, Turkeys state Religious Affairs
      Directorate issued a statement condemning the film
      saying it was part of efforts to to show Muslim people
      as potential terrorists, discriminate against them and
      hurt their feelings.
      However, the Directorate said it hoped Muslims would
      not be provoked into action would lead to tension and
      division in the societies in which they live.


      By Hilal Koc

      * The Turkish Daily News writes that their new book is
      out on the late Ottoman history. The author is
      Princeton University professor M. Sukru Hanioglu.
      Doctor Hanioglu is bringing all facets of the era -
      cultural, diplomatic, intellectual, literary, military,
      and politics - to life for readers and serves as an
      important corrective to other histories of this period,
      the Turkish daily News writes.
      Dr. Hanioglu is also the author of "Preparation for a
      Revolution: The Young Turks, 1902-1908" and "The Young
      Turks in Opposition."
      Dr. Hanioglu insists on presenting historic events
      and trends within their own context, thereby avoiding
      the pitfalls many historians face when they present
      Ottoman history in light of post-imperial and
      nationalist accounts, adds the Turkish daily News.
      See more about Dr. Hanioglu at:

      * Turkish musician Erdem Helvacioglu is releasing a new
      album in Turkey, reports the Turkish daily News.
      Though relatively unknown in Turkey, Erdem
      Helvacioglu is one of the most outstanding and
      prolific contemporary Turkish musicians, whose work
      has been described by prominent music magazine
      Gramophone as "one of the best examples of its kind."
      Mr. Helvacioglu's new album "Altered Realities" was
      already released last year in the United States by New
      Albion Records.
      His latest album is a conceptually unique
      achievement, a solo acoustic guitar and live
      electronics album, all performed and recorded in
      real-time by Helvacioglu.
      Helvacioglu, who has received numerous international
      awards including prizes from the Luigi Russolo and
      Insulae Electronicae Electroacoustic Music
      Competitions, was commissioned to compose for Bang On A
      Can-All Stars.
      Helvacioglu commission is the group's first for a
      Turkish artist.
      Helvacioglu was born in 1975 in the western city of
      Bursa and his work reflects the transformation of the
      music of the past into the music of the future through
      the use of electronic beats. He researched American
      musical history in detail to create his work. He
      composed a work titled "Lossada Taka," which means
      "Let's go there" in Abenaki, a Native American
      language. He prefers using authentic themes in his
      work, in which one can feel his combination of rhythmic
      and sentimental tunes.
      The band Bang On A Can said Helvacioglu's
      commissioned piece, which they performed on Feb. 13 in
      a concert at Merkin Hall hosted by renowned radio host
      John Schaefer, is one of the compositions they most
      enjoyed playing. Tristan Perich and Ken Thomson
      composed the other works performed at the concert.
      See video clips by Helvacioglu at:

      * The 19th Annual Ankara Film Festival announced
      winners just a few days ago. Ankara Film Festival is
      the second largest film festival in Turkey after the
      Antalya Film Festival. Its is sponsored by CNBC, NTV
      Radio and Capitol Radio,
      The national film competition awarded the first
      winning prize to the film, "Riza." The film's
      director, Tayfun Pirselimoglu was also a winner for the
      Best Director award.
      Best screenplay was given to "On the brink of life",
      by Fatih Akin.
      Best actress went to Fadik Sevin Atasoy and Best
      Actor to Yetkin Dikinciler.
      For more information on the festival, please visit
      the website at http://www.filmfestankara.org.tr

      * Istanbul is preparing for the vivid colors of tulips
      to change the atmosphere of the city as the Third
      International Istanbul Tulip Festival kicks off
      This year's festival will host different
      performances around Istanbul, including in Emirgan,
      Ortakoy Square, Sultanahmet Square, Bagdat Street and
      Goztepe Park. Among those events, there will be an
      exhibition of the famous Turkish painter Ismail Acar.
      He will display his works in an exhibition titled
      "Laleler - Tulips."
      This year's "100 most beautiful Tulips" competition
      will take place in Emirgan Korusu on May 10.
      Although tulips are associated with Holland, both the
      flower and its name originated in the Ottoman Empire.
      Tulips were brought to Europe in the 16th century;
      the word tulip is from Ottoman Turkish tulbend,
      meaning "muslin, gauze."
      Capital see more about the Tulip Festival at:


      * Ankara movie buffs are being treated to a six-day
      feast of Spanish cinema starting today with a selection
      of outstanding movies in the program.
      The "Spanish Film Week," jointly organized by the
      Spanish Embassy in Ankara and the Ankara Association
      for Cinema Culture, will feature six films that
      are the best examples of recent Spanish cinema and have
      won awards in international festivals.
      The event will run through Sunday at the Ankapol
      movie theater in Kizilay, and all films will be
      screened at 5:30 p.m. and 8:00 p.m. every day with
      Turkish subtitles.
      See the expanded coverage of the Spanish Film Week at:

      * The winning cartoons of 2007's Dogan International
      Cartoons Competition are on display at an exhibition
      that kicked off in southeastern Gaziantep province
      The exhibition is held at the Gaziantep Chamber of
      Commerce's art gallery where 3,326 cartoons are of 218
      artists from 91 countries are displayed.
      See the cartoons at:


      * The Dogan News Agency reports that a coal mine in
      the Black Sea region of Turkey that was used as a
      shelter during World War II and later as a training
      center for mine workers is going to be converted into a
      The coal mining museum in Zonguldak province, will
      open next year, and be the first in the country.
      The coal mine first became operational in 1880,
      during the late Ottoman era.
      A multi-functional hall will be built next to the
      museum. It will show movies and various other
      audiovisual shows about mining to inform visitors. A
      cafe will be opened next to the museum as well.
      Read more about the museum at:

      * The latest video for turkish band Mor ve Otesi's
      Eurovision Song Contest entry "Insane" was posted on
      Eurovision.tv last week.
      The Turkish broadcaster TRT chose Mor ve Otesi to
      represent Turkey at the 2008 Eurovision Song Contest.
      The band, known for their environmentally conscious,
      anti-war ideas, formed in Istanbul in January 1995 by
      Kerem Kabadayi (drums), Harun Tekin (vocals/guitar),
      Derin Esmer (vocals/guitar) and Alper Tekin (bass),
      four close high-school friends in.


      EXCHANGE RATE for the U.S. dollar in Turkish Liras: 1.29


      High and Low Temperatures in Degrees F, Weather

      Ankara, in central Turkey----------: 63/46 Heavy Showers
      Antalya, on the Mediterranean------: 68/57 Heavy Showers
      Erzurum in eastern Turkey----------: 50/34 Mostly Cloudy
      Istanbul, in northwestern Turkey---: 63/50 Light Showers
      Izmir, on the Aegean---------------: 59/54 Heavy Showers
      Trabzon, on the Black Sea----------: 68/46 Mostly Cloudy


      Turkish soccer premier league:

      In this week's games:


      In last week's games:


      Turkish Soccer Premier League, ranking:

      Rank Team Points
      1 FENERBAHCE 63
      2 GALATASARAY A.S. 61
      3 SIVASSPOR 61
      4 BESIKTAS A.S. 58
      5 KAYSERISPOR 48
      6 DENIZLISPOR 39
      7 TRABZONSPOR A.S. 38
      12 BURSASPOR 31
      13 ANKARASPOR A.S. 30
      15 KONYASPOR 28
      18 KASIMPASA 19

      European Champions League:

      * According to the Turkish channel NTV, Turkish soccer team Fenerbahce did
      more than enough to keep their Champions League campaign alive Wednesday
      night, bouncing back from the disappointment of an early own goal to beat
      English powerhouse Chelsea 2-1 in the first leg of the quarter final tie
      in Istanbul.
      The Istanbul side now go into next week's return match in London
      confident they can become the first Turkish club to advance to the
      competition's semi-finals.

      * Istanbul Rally, Turkey's oldest international motor sport event with a
      36-year past, is being held this weekend.
      This year, 21 international and 37 Turkish drivers will be rushing
      their cars along the route, which is about 800 kilometers long and will
      once again consist of smooth gravel roads on Istanbul's Asian side and in
      the neighboring city of Kocaeli.

      * The Turkey leg of the Olympic torch relay was held yesterday in Istanbul
      where police detained at least six Uighur Turks who were protesting
      against China.
      The demonstrators were detained after they broke away from a larger
      group of protesters and shouted slogans just meters away from Tugba
      Karademir, a Turkish figure skater and Olympic athlete who started to run
      with the torch through the city, reported the Associated Press. About 200
      Uighur Turks had converged ahead of the ceremony near the Blue Mosque and
      the St. Sofia.
      "Turkey, stand by your brothers," read a banner at the protest. "We
      don't want a country like China, with a bad human rights record, to hold
      the Olympics, which symbolize humanity, peace and brotherhood," protester
      Hayrullah Efendigil told the Associated Press.

      Turkish Basketball, Men's First League, ranking:

      Rank Team Points
      1 BesIktas Cola Turka 47
      2 Efes Pilsen 46
      3 Galatasaray Cafe Crown 43
      4 Fenerbahce Ulker 42
      5 TURK Telekom 42
      6 Pinar Karsiyaka 41
      7 Antalya Bsb. 41
      8 Mersin Buyuksehir Bld. 38
      9 Banvit 37
      10 Casa TED A. Kolejliler 37
      11 Kepez Belediye 36
      12 Mutlu Aku Selcuk Univ. 35
      13 Oyak Renault 35
      14 Alpella 34
      15 Darussafaka 34
      16 TTNet Beykoz 33

      Turkish basketball, Women's First League, ranking:

      Rank Team Points
      1 Fenerbahce 42
      2 Galatasaray 39
      3 BesIktas Cola Turka 38
      4 Pankup TED Kayseri Koleji 37
      5 Botas Spor Kulubu 37
      6 Mersin Buyuksehir Bld. 35
      7 Ceyhan Belediye 33
      8 Bahcesehir Burhaniye Belediye 30
      9 Cankaya Universitesi 28
      10 Migros Spor Kulubu 28
      11 Istanbul Universitesi 27
      12 Edremit Basketbol 12


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      *** For more music from Turkey and the Middle East tune to
      International Cultural Program.

      San Francisco World TV Channel 29
      Sundays at 9-10 A.M.

      *** Stay tuned to our program for free tickets for a
      Mesut Özgen
      performance. We will give away the tickets next week:

      The performance is on Wednesday, April 16, 2008
      folk-inspired Turkish classical guitarist
      Door 7:30 P.M., Music 8:00 P.M.

      Freight & Salvage Coffee House
      1111 Addison Street
      Berkeley, CA 94702
      Telephone: (510) 548-1761

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