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x0x Turkish news for week ending 25 July 2009

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  • Turkish Culture List
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    Message 1 of 1 , Jul 29, 2009
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      x0x Turkish news for week ending 25 July 2009

      [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 Fuad Tokad.

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



      Edited by Fuad Tokad

      * Friday's meeting of Turkey's Supreme Board of
      Judges and Prosecutors did not yield any results,
      reports the Turkish daily Cumhuriyet.
      The Supreme Board of Judges and Prosecutors is the
      body that appoints judges and prosecutors in
      There are claims that the Board is delaying
      appointments to spoil politically charged
      lawsuits, especially the one concerning an alleged
      coup attempt in which hundreds of intellectuals,
      former military, and former officials are being
      accused of plotting.
      A senior official from the ruling Justice and
      Development Party, Mr. Bekir Bozdag, who
      criticized the delay in the deliberations of the
      board said, "the public is getting the impression
      that 'something is up'. Nobody has a right to
      create such an impression."
      The board's acting president Mr. Kadir Ozbek who
      made a statement following Mr. Bozdag's remarks
      said, "I want them to leave justice to the
      judiciary, and want them to know that the only
      interlocutor of the judiciary in the board is the
      justice minister".
      Mr. Ozbek said they were face to face with
      criticism they did not deserve, adding that this
      would harm everyone reported the daily Cumhuriyet.

      * The Turkish daily Milliyet reported on Thursday
      that Eckart Cuntz, the German ambassador to
      Turkey, presented a medal of merit to Dogan
      Holding's Executive Board chairman Mr. Aydin
      The German ambassador said that with the medal of
      merit, the German president thanked Mr. Dogan for
      his extraordinary sense of responsibility for
      friendship between both Turkey and Germany, and
      the Turks and the Germans.
      Mr. Dogan, speaking at the ceremony, said the
      concept of an European Union "privileged
      partnership" led to disappointment in Turkey,
      adding that, "our train has departed long before.
      Ours is a one-way ticket. Full membership is the
      final destination."
      The current German Chancellor is advocating that
      Turkey should only be a privileged partner to the
      European Union, and advocating against a full
      Turkish membership.
      Mr. Dogan is a billionaire who made his fortunes
      in the newspaper publishing business. The Dogan
      Holding owns Kanal D, Star TV, CNN Turk, and
      newspapers such as Hurriyet, Milliyet, Radikal,
      and Posta.
      The junior members of his family are also on the
      list of Turkish billionaires. One of his
      daughters is the chairperson for the Turkish
      Businessmen's and Industrialists Association.
      The current Turkish administration and Mr. Dogan
      are currently at loggerheads due to reporting of
      an embezzlement case. The case which was tried in
      Germany involves donations to a Germany-based
      Turkish charity, and subsequent convictions of a
      number of officials of the charity in Germany.
      German authorities are saying that some of the
      suspects are in Turkey and are political
      appointees of the current Justice and Development
      Party administration. Mr. Dogan says that due to
      the reporting of this case in his papers, the
      government started accusing him of tax evasion.

      * According to the reporting in the Turkish press
      in the past few weeks, there are efforts by both
      the ruling and opposition politicians in Turkey to
      establish peace between the Turkish government and
      the Kurdish rebels.
      Turkish and world press has been reporting for a
      while that even the jailed leader of the rebels is
      also working on a peace proposal.
      One of the efforts is coming from the ruling
      Justice and Development Party administration, and
      is dubbed the "Kurdish Move".
      Commenting on "Kurdish move" discussions, Turkish
      Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan said,
      "Whatever you call, it either the Kurdish problem
      or Southeastern problem or Eastern problem or
      Kurdish move, we have launched initiatives on the
      matter and have made significant progress."
      Mr. Erdogan said the matter was discussed in
      Turkey's National Security Council, and the
      Council "has charged the Interior Ministry with
      the task."
      Mr. Erdogan also warned Justice and Development
      Party deputies about their assessments. "Everybody
      can speak in a democratic country; however, I will
      not tolerate any statements by my party's
      lawmakers that would harm the consensus, reported
      daily Cumhuriyet on Thursday.

      * In related news, after the ruling Justice and
      Development party's efforts for peace, the Turkish
      daily Sabah reported that the main opposition
      Republican People's Party is preparing a package
      of proposals as a solution to the Kurdish issue.
      The package prepared by academicians include,
      among others, proposals such as:
      "The term 'terrorism' should not be used. Dialogue
      should be the basis. Local administrations should
      be strengthened."

      * Prominent Turkish novelist Yasar Kemal also
      issued a call for a solution to the Kurdish
      He said the solution depended on the recognition
      of fundamental human rights.
      "Neither Turks nor Kurds want to get separated
      from each other," he said. "No power can separate
      them." reported the daily Sabah on Friday.

      * The Constitutional Court, Turkey's highest
      judicial body, decided to invalidate some clauses
      in Article 2 and Article 3 of the law on
      eradicating landmines along the border with Syria.
      The law stipulates that a company could be allowed
      to use the land that it de-mines for agriculture.
      The lawsuit to evaluate these two laws was
      initiated by the main opposition Republican
      People's Party. This was the 37th case won by the
      Republican People's Party in the last six years,
      reported the Turkish daily Vatan on Friday.

      * The Turkish daily Milliyet reported that in
      regard to the recent tension between Turkey and
      China after the incidents in Eastern Turkistan
      which Chinese call Xinjiang -- new territories,
      Chinese Ambassador to Turkey Gong Xiaosheng said
      the two countries would overcome this small issue.
      Mr. Gong Xiaosheng said foreign affairs ministers
      of the two countries had a meeting which lasted
      for 70 minutes.
      "Turkey is a major state and the relations between
      the two countries would continue", he said.

      * The winner of the recent general elections in
      Bulgaria, Boyko Borisov, is set to assign a deputy
      of Turkish descent as culture minister in his new
      Turkish-Bulgarian sculptor Vejdi Rashidov is the
      only Turkish deputy elected to the parliament from
      Mr. Borisov's new political party, the Citizens
      for the European Development of Bulgaria. "We want
      to have the Turkish state as a good neighbor to
      us. We will not discriminate by religion or
      "At least four others of Turkish descent will take
      part in the government," Mr. Borisov told the
      Turkish daily Hurriyet.

      * Foreign affairs minister Mr. Ahmet Davutoglu
      appointed two non-ministry people as ambassadors.
      Professor Kenan Gursoy, an Islamic philosophy
      expert and the dean of the Faculty of Science and
      Letters at Galatasaray University, is expected to
      be assigned as the ambassador to the Vatican,
      reported daily Milliyet on Friday.

      * The Turkish daily Radikal reported that Turkey's
      foreign affairs minister Mr. Ahmet Davutoglu made
      a terse warning on the Cyprus problem, saying the
      status quo needed to change.
      "Negotiations will either end the division of the
      island or we will all have to consider alternative
      ways. Everyone should fully understand that the
      negotiations offer the last chance.
      "We do not want the status quo to continue on the
      island. Turkish Cypriots can no longer live under
      economic isolation as if they committed a crime
      against humanity.
      "There is an expression in English: 'Enough is
      enough,'" Mr. Davutoglu said in a televised

      * According to the Turkish daily Yeni Safak,
      Turkish military cast a major blow to Somalian
      pirates attacking civilian targets in the Bay of
      Underwater assault teams seized a pirate boat
      which was getting ready to hijack a ship.
      Upon a call from NATO the Gediz Frigate started
      the operation in dawn, the underwater assault
      teams with support of helicopters seized the
      target at 09:55 and captured the five Somalian
      pirates alive.

      * Another rescue news involves the Turkish vessel
      Yasa Seyhan half a world away.
      The crew of Yasa Seyhan rescued two Americans off
      Florida who were dragged by a storm with their
      yacht. Eric Ross, 48, and Vincent Faulkner, 39,
      said they were treated kindly by the Turkish crew.
      "They offered us water, ice cream, coffee and
      cigarettes. They also let use take a shower, and
      they gave us clean clothes," reported daily
      Yasa Seyhan itself was attacked by pirates in
      Sudan in February.

      * The Turkish daily Radikal reported last Sunday
      that the expanded smoking ban went into effect in
      Turkey in all enclosed public places including
      restaurants, coffeehouses and bars.
      The European expression "smokes like a Turk" will
      no more apply, the daily Radikal writes.
      Smokers who violate the ban will face
      approximately $45 penalty in local currency, and
      business owners will have to pay a fine as high as
      $4000 if they allow smoking.

      * Turkish daily Hurriyet reports that data showed
      that 36 percent of Turkey's adult population of 48
      million are smokers, with 5.5 billion packages of
      cigarette consumed annually.
      The Turkish government collects 8 percent of its
      total tax revenue from tobacco products.
      The first phase of the law restricting smoking
      went into effect in May 2008 and made it illegal
      to smoke on public transportation, and in
      workplaces and malls.
      Restaurants, bars and cafes were given an extra
      year to bring themselves into compliance with the
      Turkey will be the seventh country on the European
      continent to ban smoking in all enclosed public

      * The Istanbul Chamber of Industry released its
      top 500 industrial enterprises of 2008 survey.
      The losses of companies on the list were 450
      percent up in 2008 over 2007.
      Their profit was only 13.3 percent, which is the
      lowest rate in eight years, reported tha Turkish
      daily Radikal.

      * Daily Radikal also reported the number of
      foreign tourists visiting Turkey in the first six
      months dropped only by 0.9 percent.
      The figures by the Turkish Culture and Tourism
      Ministry showed that 10.6 million foreign tourists
      visited Turkey to spend their holiday between
      January and June 2009.
      In the same period last year, 10.7 million foreign
      tourists had visited Turkey.


      Edited by Colleen Clarke

      * The Turkish daily Hurriyet reported that the
      face of one of the six-winged angel figures at the
      Hagia Sophia in Istanbul has been unveiled.
      The mosaic is believed to be about 700 years old.
      The mosaic was last seen by Sultan Abdulmecid of
      the Ottoman Empire and Swiss architect Gaspare
      Fossati during the restoration inside the Hagia
      Sophia from 1847 to 1849.
      During the process of converting the church into
      mosque centuries ago, the angel figures were
      covered in line with the traditions of Islam.
      According to the Bible, the six-winged angels are
      called seraphim. They are the closest angels to
      God. They surround God's throne.
      There are four seraphim corresponding to the four
      winds of the world. They each have six wings
      corresponding to the six days of creation.

      * The winner of the third annual Deutsche Bank
      Urban Age Award will be announced Nov. 4 at a
      reception inaugurating the Urban Age Istanbul
      Conference that will be held Nov. 5 to 6. The
      award comes with a $100,000 prize, according to a
      report in Hurriyet Daily News.
      For 2009, the Urban Age project is focusing on
      Istanbul as it extends its investigations into the
      links between the social characteristics and the
      physical forms of global cities. Project
      organizers said Istanbul's strategic location
      makes it a vital reference point for understanding
      urban trends in southeast Europe, the eastern
      Mediterranean and the Middle East.
      The project explores how the city's evolving
      polycentric form - shaped by its recently extended
      administrative boundaries, decentralized national
      policies, increased investment in public transport
      and new commercial and residential developments in
      outlying enclaves - addresses the social inclusion
      of a culturally diverse population.
      The conference will follow a year of research and
      analysis of the key issues related to Istanbul's
      recent growth, including how the city's
      transcontinental terrain has established it at the
      center of the Turkish economy.
      An independent jury drawn from an international
      community of urban leaders, designers,
      businesspeople, media members and civic leaders
      will evaluate all submissions and determine the
      winner of the award.
      The deadline for project submissions is Sept. 11.

      * Hurriyet Daily News reports that registration
      for piano master classes with the renowned Turkish
      pianist Idil Biret at the AyvalIk International
      Music Academy from Aug. 28 to Sept. 4 have begun.
      The deadline for applications is July 31.
      Ms. Biret, who has directed piano master classes
      at the academy for the last two years, will focus
      on Chopin in the 2009 classes.
      To attend the "Chopin Interpretations with Idil
      Biret" master class, the participants should play
      piano at a conservatory level, know about Chopin's
      repertory and also play at least a Mazurka and
      Music master classes have been held every year
      during the summer and fall seasons in the Aegean
      town of AyvalIk for 12 years, focusing mostly on
      string instruments. Students from Turkey, Europe
      and even as far away as New Zealand have been
      gathering for eight to 10 days of intense
      studying, practicing and performing with
      distinguished international faculty at this Aegean
      coastal town.
      Ms. Biret showed a gift for music at the age of 3
      and was trained at the Paris Conservatory under
      the tutelage of Nadia Boulanger. She studied with
      Alfred Cortot and was a lifelong disciple of
      Wilhelm Kempff, who considered her a great
      For more information, go to

      * A newly established Turkish music academy, based
      in a 130-year-old restored Greek house, is
      gathering experts from Turkey and various European
      countries together with students reports the
      Hurriyet Daily News. This is the first music
      Academy in Izmir province, located on the Aegean
      coast of Turkey.
      Six Turkish and European musician masters will
      train young musicians at the Urla Music Academy in
      the town of Urla this year.
      Two entrepreneurs and sisters, Inci Coskuner and
      Sedef Tuncag, restored the old Greek house in
      Urla. Tolga Alpay, principal bassoonist in the
      Izmir State Symphony Orchestra, is one of the
      artists who contributed in the establishment of
      the Academy. Alpay said the academy would host
      five courses this summer, and there are plans to
      hold courses in winter, too. "The courses target
      especially young musicians, who have just
      graduated and want to improve. One had to travel
      abroad to work with the teachers here, now they
      are coming to Turkey."
      The academy opened with a bassoon and reed
      manufacturing course. Next was a flute course by
      Prof. Andras Adorjan, a lecturer at Munich Music
      High School.
      Oboist Hanjorg Schellenberger of the Berlin
      Philharmonic Orchestra, cellist Heidi Litschauer
      of the Mozarteum University in Salzburg, and
      clarinet player Guy Dangain of Conservatoire
      National Superieur de Musique de Paris are other
      lecturers of the at the academy.
      Andree Sommer, a lecturer of Bilkent University's
      music and stage arts faculty, will play the piano
      during the training programs.
      The courses will end on Sept. 29.

      * San Francisco-based radio host and concert
      producer Dore Stein puts on his fifth musical tour
      in Turkey this October, reports Hurriyet Daily
      An aficionado of world music, Mr. Stein's romance
      with the music in Turkey is the centerpiece of
      this intimate voyage of cultural immersion. "I
      know of no other tour for Westerners that
      organizes concerts with artists from Turkey," he
      Whether they come from near or far to immerse in
      Turkey's musical landscape, people who join the
      Tangents Turkey tour - with its 10 concerts in 16
      nights - are captivated by this multicultural land
      and its myriad sounds. Some can't stay away and
      have returned to live. This year's tour is October
      Professionals in the music and travel industries
      call the tour a one-of-a-kind gem. Tom Brosnahan,
      writer of bestselling Lonely Planet Turkey guides,
      said the tour was unforgettable. "Dore opens doors
      that music-lovers who travel on their own don't
      even know are there," he said.
      Mr. Stein fell in love with Turkish music when he
      came to Istanbul in 2004 despite a cancelled music
      conference. Driving in Cappadocia with Mehmet
      Dasdeler, now a close friend and associate for the
      tour, Mr. Dasdeler popped a cassette in the
      player. Spellbound by the voice of Sabahat Akkiraz
      wafting from the speakers, news Stein said, "It is
      a special, magical, moment when a sound instantly
      carves a place in one's heart."

      * A cultural inventory of the southeastern city of
      DiyarbakIr will be conducted under the leadership
      of the DiyarbakIr Museum Directorate, according to
      the Anatolia News Agency.
      A group of researchers made up of architects,
      archaeologists and art historians is recording the
      cultural resources in the city. President of the
      commission, Nevin Soyukaya, said that they had
      confirmed 150 historical structures so far.
      "Historical research was carried out in central
      DiyarbakIr in 1988, but the inventory has not been
      updated. When we complete our research, we will
      publish a book titled 'DiyarbakIr Culture
      Inventory,'" she said.
      Ms. Soyukaya said that the Metropolitan
      Municipality was preparing a construction plan for
      to protect the areas and that their research would
      create a substructure design for it. She added
      that historical monuments had been photographed,
      recorded and sketched.
      "We do not treasure the cultural values in
      DiyarbakIr as much as they deserve," Ms. Soyukaya
      said. "We will also do historical research in
      towns. We need to find and record all of the
      monuments. We need to inventory the mounds in the
      villages and towns, otherwise we won't be able to
      understand what we may lose when the historical
      monuments are damaged."


      EXCHANGE RATE for the U.S. dollar in New Turkish Liras: 1.48


      High and Low Temperatures in Degrees F, Weather

      Ankara, in central Turkey----------: 95/64 Hot
      Antalya, on the Mediterranean------: 104/86 Hot
      Istanbul, in northwestern Turkey---: 90/73 Mostly Cloudy
      Izmir, on the Aegean---------------: 104/79 Hot
      Trabzon, on the Black Sea----------: 86/70 Thunderstorms

      Seawater temperatures

      Black Sea measured at Trabzon 81
      Marmara Sea measured at Tekirdag 79
      Aegean Sea measured at Izmir 82
      Mediterranean Sea measured at Antalya 82


      * In the UEFA European league championships
      preliminaries, the Turkish team Galatasaray beat
      its Kazakh rival 2 to 0. This is the second time
      the two rivals played against each other. In the
      first game Galatasaray had a 1-1 draw.

      * In the 20th European youth Athletics
      championships in Serbia, Turkey's Resul Cevik
      received a silver medal in men's 1500 m race.
      This is the second silver medal after Askin
      Karaca's in the men's triple jump competitions.

      * In the 10th European Olympics youth summer
      festival games in Tampere Finland, Turkey's star
      women's volleyball national team beat its Russian
      rivals 3 to 2 and became the European champions.


      *** Turkish American Association of California (TAAC) in cooperation with the TAAC Monterey Bay Chapter and Horon Turkish Folk Ensemble proudly presents...

      12th Annual Turkish Art and Culture Festival in Monterey

      August 1-2, 2009, Sat & Sun, 11am - 6pm

      Monterey Custom House Plaza/State Historic Park [next to the Fisherman's Wharf]

      ( http://www.turkfestca.org, http://www.monterey.com)


      Featuring many fun activities for the whole family, the two-day festival will include live Turkish music and folk dances performances, Turkish art and crafts exhibits and vendor booths, Food (Doner kebap, Adana Kofte,...) and Drinks (Turkish Coffee/tea, Soft drinks, Turkish Raki, beer, wine) and many special activities for children.

      The authentic Turkish food will be prepared and sold by the NEW KAPADOKIA and SAKO's Mediterranean restaurants.

      *** We will also give away tickets to the
      following concert. Leave your name,
      telephone number and or email for a drawing. Or
      drop an email to trh@...

      *** A play directed by a Turkish American
      is opening up in San Francisco and we will be given
      away five pairs of tickets.

      Golden Thread Productions, a San Francisco-based
      theater company dedicated to staging alternative
      perspectives of the Middle East is opening its next play,

      ECSTASY | a waterfable

      at the Thick House (San Francisco)
      on the 31st of July.

      The play is directed by Evren Odcikin,
      an up and coming San Francisco-based director
      who was born and raised in Turkey.

      *** We have one pair of tickets for:

      Ancient-Future.Com Records 30th Anniversary
      CD Release Party
      3 Releases Celebrating 30 Years of World Fusion Music
      --'Seven Serenades for Scalloped Fretboard Guitar'
      by Matthew Montfort (Acoustic Guitar)
      --'Sangria' by Mariah Parker (Indo Latin Jazz)
      --'Planet Passion' (30th Anniversary Remastered Edition)
      by Ancient Future (World Music)

      Sunday, July 26, 8 pm
      Freight & Salvage Coffeehouse
      1111 Addison Street
      Berkeley, CA 94702

      *** One of our underwriters is the European
      Turkish Market of Burlingame. European Turkish
      Market is a family-owned-and-operated market in
      Burlingame, California, offering a large variety
      of international food and gift items for your
      needs. From succulent deli meats to enticing
      Turkish, and mediterranean foods, the market
      offers you a large selection of your favorite
      European items under one roof.Visit the European
      Turkish Market to find the perfect International
      food and gift item that you have been searching

      1138 Chula Vista Avenue

      Burlingame, CA 94010-3502

      Phone (650) 548-5386

      On the www at :

      Bugunki programimizin sizlere getirilmesinde
      European Turkish Market'in katkilari olmu$tur.

      Turkiye ve Akdenizden her tur bakkaliye ve
      hediyelik e$yanin bulundugu market Burlingame'de,
      hemen broadwat chiki$indadir.

      Telefonlari ve adresleri:

      1138 Chula Vista Avenue

      Burlingame, CA 94010-3502

      (650) 548-5386

      *** Turkish American Association of California is a non-profit
      charitable organization established to promote better
      understanding between Americans and Turks.

      If you have any questions about Turks and Turkey,
      e-mail them at taac@...

      *** Planning to go to Turkey? Take a look at our Web pages
      that are full of articles and information furnished by
      travelers like yourselves:


      *** 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.

      *** Yore dance invites you to:
      Free Turkish Folkdance Classes.

      Sundays at 11:00 AM - 1:30 PM
      Shawl-Anderson Dance Center
      2704 Alcatraz Ave., Berkeley CA 94705
      Corner of College & Alcatraz

      Tuesdays at 8:00 PM - 10:30 PM

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