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Edited by Selin Toprak
★ US President Donald Trump threatened to slap "large sanctions" on its NATO ally Turkey on Thursday if the government refused to free a detained Christian pastor,
reports the Deutsche Welle.
Andrew Brunson, who had been detained by Turkey in October 2016 on terror-related charges, was transferred from prison to house arrest on Wednesday, but Trump took to Twitter to demand that the pastor be freed, writing that, "This innocent man of faith should be released immediately!"
Trump's threat raised hackles in Turkey, with the government of President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan shooting back at Trump that it would "never tolerate threats."
Mevlüt Çavuşoğlu, Turkey's foreign affairs minister, tweeted that, "No one dictates [to] Turkey."
★ According to Deutsche Welle, a study from the Center for Turkish Studies at the University of Duisburg-Essen in Germany has found that most of the 3 million people with Turkish roots living Germany feel more strongly connected to Turkey than to Germany.
The study was released one day after German footballer Mesut Özil announced he was quitting the national team citing racism as the reason, after he was criticized for meeting with Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan in May.
★ Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan will come to Berlin in late September for his first official visit to Germany in four years, Bild newspaper reported on Saturday,
reports the Deutsche Welle.
It would be Erdoğan's first state visit to Germany after he became president in 2014 and moved to cement his control over Turkey through a controversial referendum last year granting him sweeping powers.
The planned visit, which Bild reported based on Turkish and German official sources, would include a military honor guard and state banquet. Neither government has confirmed the report.
★ According to Deutsche Welle, Turkey has once again arrested a German citizen on supposed "terror propaganda" charges, Germany's Foreign
Affairs Ministry in Berlin confirmed on Thursday.
The German man, identified only Dennis E., was arrested in southern Turkey for allegedly producing and disseminating propaganda for the outlawed Kurdistan Workers' Party on social media.
According to local media, Dennis E. was arrested by anti-terror police in his apartment in the coastal town of Arsuz in the Hatay province. After being questioned, he was remanded in custody at the request of the public prosecutor's office on suspicion of spreading "terrorist propaganda."
★ U.S. Defense Secretary Jim Mattis says equipment has landed at a base in Turkey to prepare Turkish troops for joint patrols with U.S. forces in northern Syria.
"Training equipment has landed in Incirlik," Mattis told reporters Friday at the Pentagon, referring to a strategic air base in southern Turkey used by American forces.
Mattis said the training should start within weeks.
"I don't think we're talking months," he said.
It is unclear when U.S. and Turkish forces would start conducting the joint patrols in Syria once training of Turkey's troops is complete.
ARTS AND CULTURE
★ The renowned American singer Gloria Gaynor will be in Turkey's southwestern city of Bodrum on August 9, reports the Turkish daily Cumhuriyet.
Gaynor is nicknamed the "Queen of disco". Her 1978 song "I Will Survive" made her to the top of the charts around the world.
★ UNESCO included The ancient city of Troy in the World Heritage List in 1998. In Turkey, the 20th anniversary of the inclusion is being celebrated this year as part of "The Year of Troy", reports the daily Cumhuriyet .
As part of the year of Troy, a new Museum is opened at the site. The head of the Troy antique city excavations had Dr. Rüstem Aslan has just penned a book titled "Troy for the Starters".
The Çanakkale history and culture foundation is undertaking two projects, "Tourism in the Future" and "The Culture Destination Troy".
As part of the second project villages near the two major towns around the ancient city are getting paths for walkers and roads for bicyclists.
According to Turkish officials, the visitors to the ancient site is expected to reach 1 million this year
★ A 1600-year-old Byzantine palace has been left to survive on its own, Aykut Küçükkaya of the daily Cumhuriyet reports. However, the old structure is not doing very well on its own, and is simply in ruins.
Although the palace is included in UNESCO's World Heritage List, assembly member Fazıl Uğur of the Fatih City Municipality in the Greater Istanbul Metropolitan Area found out from authorities who are supposed to protect ancient structures that there is nothing on the books or in the plans to protect the structure.
The directorate of the Fourth Regional Assembly for the Protection of Cultural Heritage responded to Mr. Fazıl Uğur's official inquiry and admitted that the ancient palace is left to its fate. The directorate said Istanbul Greater Metropolitan Area Municipality owns the building and that it is responsible for its maintenance and protection.
The ancient structure is named the Boukolean Palace and is located by the Marmara Sea in the historic old Istanbul downtown district.
★ A Turkish film director,Yunus Ozan Korkut, is going to be tried for a 2016 movie that he made on the street people of Ceyhan in southern Turkey.
The authorities are accusing him of praising crime and criminals, and making drugs appealing to people.
His lawyer says that the authorities have overlooked that the movie is a work of art that contains sarcasm and criticism.
He also points out that the movie was made with the approval of all legal authorities, and that the movie won many awards in international film festivals.
He also adds that is not a courthouse that should judge a film but rather the public opinion should do this function.
★ Turkey's award winning director Mahmut Fazıl Coşkun's new film "Announcement" is among the 18 films that have been selected in the category titled Orizzonti in the 75th Venice International Film Festival, reports the daily Cumhuriyet.
The film tells the story of four retired military officers' unusual travel.
The 75th Venice International Film Festival will take place between August 29 and September 8.
★ The Malatya International Film Festival will honor the Kyrgyz author Chyngyz Aytmatov with a special program titled "Aytmatov Is 90 Years Old".
Aytmatov started writing in 1952 and became famous with his storybook "Tales of the Mountains and Steps", which won him a Lenin prize.
The Malatya Festival will screen movies based on Aytmatov's works. Among the films is a Turkish one titled "The Girl with the Red Scarf" directed by renowned Turkish director Atıf Yılmaz .
The 1978 movie is based on Aytmatov's short story titled "The Red Scarf". Read more at >> here <<
The festival is taking place in Turkey's southeastern city of Malatya.
★ The Red Bull Music Festival which takes place in New York, Los Angeles, Paris, Berlin and Sao Paulo will be in Istanbul this year.
The festival will feature 60 artists on stage.
14 Turkish musicians led by Cahit Berkay and Okay Temiz will participate in an improvisational duet night. There will be also a series of bands and musicians playing in a category titled "20 years of RBMA: A Celebration".
There will be also an exhibition of remakes of legendary films around the theme of "Art of B-Movies".
★ The 16th international Bodrum ballet Festival will take place, August 1 through 15 this year.
The venue is the Bodrum antique theater, which dates to classical Greek era to the fourth century BC.
The festival will start with the ballet "Zorba", with the Greek musician Mikis Theodorakis' music, and with the choreography of Lorca Massine.
On August 3, Castro Romero Flamenco group from Spain will perform.
Other groups that will take part in the Festival are:
Vienna State Opera and ballet staging "The Best of Ballet", Istanbul State Opera and ballet staging "Don Quixote", Ankara State Opera and Ballet Modern Dance Group staging Frida.
★ Turkey's southeastern city of Harran, which has been on the tentative list of UNESCO World Heritage, is now excitedly awaiting to move to the permanent list. The nearby 12,000-year-old Göbekli Tepe archaeological site containing objects used in rituals got on the permanent list recently.
The Harran University archaeology department and the Harran ruins excavation head Dr. Mehmet Önal says that the Harran area had continuous settlements going back to 8000 years ago.
In the excavations so far Dr. Önal says that they have unearthed two baths, two marketplaces, a shop selling musk and a courtyard with a fountain.
★ British singer Tom Jones will have a concert in Turkey's Mediterranean town of Belek on July 30th.
Jones is 78 years old and has been singing for 60 years.
★ Another exciting excavation that has started 30 years ago is still continuing in Turkey's eastern province of Van, near the lake by the same name.
The Ayanis Fort, built some 2700 years ago by the Urartian King Ruso II, is yielding interesting finds.
The excavation head Dr. Mehmet Işıklı says that the fort is one of the best protected from the Urartus. He says that they have found a temple within the fort and have been working to excavate it for the past five years. Last year the temple area revealed a beautiful podium and spaces connected to the podium. The elegant podium is made of marble.
★ In the excavations in the ancient city of Tripolis in Turkey's western province of Denizli, archaeologists found at 12-room villa with floors covered with mosaics.
The villa is estimated to be 2000 year old.
The head of the excavations Dr. Bahadır Duman from the archaeology department of the Pamukkale University says that in addition to the floor mosaics the rooms are covered with frescoes. He says that the villa probably belonged to a merchant dealing with agricultural products.
The villa also has a sewer system that still works. Archaeologists also discovered a big bath, and a small lavatory.
Dr. Duman says that they are also finding evidence of settlements going back to 5500 BC under the antique city. The human life has existed continuously in the area until 13th century.
★ The Dagestani-born Israeli musician Mark Eliyahu will perform in Istanbul on August 3, Orhun Atmiş of the daily Cumhuriyet reports. Eliyahu is a master of the musical instrument kamancha. At age 16 he was inspired by the great master of the instrument, late Azeri musician Habil Aliyev, and decided to learn how to played by moving to Baku, Azerbaijan.
He will be on stage in Istanbul with music from Azerbaijan, Turkey, Iran and Arabic countries. He will be performing using his 150-year-old instrument, and will be accompanied by his father who was another inspiration for him when he was growing up.
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