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x0x Turkish News for the week ending 25 August 2018
[This is a transcript of the news broadcast on 25 August 2018]
Courtesy of Turkish Radio Hour, producer of the
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★ Turkish-U.S. cooperation continues to deepen in Syria, despite a crisis in bilateral relations, reports Dorian Jones of the VOA.
According to the Turkish military, the two NATO allies are about to carry out joint military patrols in northern Syria's Manbij region.
Manbij has been a point of tension in U.S.-Turkish relations since Syrian Democratic Forces captured the city from Islamic State. A large part of the Syrian Democratic Forces is made up of the Syrian Kurdish militia, the YPG, considered by Turkey as terrorists linked to the Kurdistan Workers Party of the rebel Turkish Kurds. The U. S. and the European Union designate the Kurdistan Workers Party as a terrorist organization.
By pressuring the US, Turkey was able to have the YPG forces removed from the area.
In related news, VOA's Carla Babb reported on August 20 that
the U.S. service members have not yet started training Turkish forces for joint patrols near Manbij, despite U.S. Secretary of Defense Jim Mattis telling reporters last week that he expected them to start by Sunday night.
"We still have a few details to work out," Pentagon spokesman Army Col. Robert Manning told reporters Monday at the Pentagon, adding that "rehearsals for combined patrols" would begin "as soon as possible."
Read more at >> here <<
A Turkish military vehicle on patrol near Idlib
★ According to the news reports this week, Turkish foreign affairs minister Mevlüt Çavuşoğlu paid a visit to the Russian capital Moscow.
One of the goals of Mr. Çavuşoğlu was to slowdown the Syrian advance against Syria's last rebel held province of Idlib. The Syrian forces are backed by Russia.
At a press conference, Mr. Çavuşoğlu said that Russia
and Turkey should work together to maintain the cease-fire in Syria as stipulated under the Astana Process.
The Astana Process calls for Russia and Iran, the main supporters of the Syrian government, to work with Turkey, one of the chief backers of the rebels, to end Syria's civil war.
News reports also said that Turkey's defense and intelligence chiefs were in Moscow on Friday for discussions with Russian officials including President Putin.
★ The state department spokesperson Heather Nauert has said that Turkish purchase of Russian S-400 air defense system is a concern for the U. S.
Ms. Nauert says that the missile system is not compatible with NATO armament. Other NATO officials also point out that the Russian missiles may be used by Russia to spy on NATO systems and operations.
★ According to Agence France-Presse, Leyla Birlik, a former member of parliament from Turkey's pro-Kurdish People's Democratic Party violated her parole conditions and
fled to Greece.
Upon arrival in Greece she requested asylum there.
★ Civilian traffic controllers have stopped numerous vehicles in Istanbul's Beşiktaş district on Friday and issued fines to Uber drivers.
The drivers were cited for not having permits from the district.
Drivers say that they forward the fines to Uber. They say also that Uber tells them to keep working. Most of the passengers are Arab tourists, drivers indicate. They also say that the business is good for them.
Uber's services are considered one grade up from taxi services in Turkey.
★ The world's currency markets started declining last week as Turkey's economic turmoil triggered fresh fears its fallout could spread amid predictions that Turkish woes might trigger a repeat of the 2008 global financial crash, Jamie Dettmer of the VOA reported on August 21.
Stock prices of European banks, big lenders to Turkey, plummeted and the currencies of China, Brazil and Mexico all have weakened.
"We are going to have another crash that will be worse than 2008 in certain ways," financial analyst Tim Lee, author of the investment risk newsletter piEconomics, told The New York Times.
Read more at >> here <<
Tourist boats in Istanbul
★ The economy is not doing well in Turkey in general, however, there is one bright sector: according to the Associated Press, after a grim 2016, Turkish tourism is making a comeback.
Nearly 19 million people - 16 million of them foreigners and the rest Turks living abroad
- visited Turkey in the first six months of this year, a 29 percent increase over the same period in 2017, according to the government. Tourism revenue rose by a similar percentage to more than $11 billion.
Among the tourists sighted recently in Turkey was former French President Nicholas Sarkozy and his wife singer Carla Bruni.
Read more at >> here <<
Click on photo to see alarger view
★ The British daily Guardian carried an article about the root cause of the recent currency collapse in Turkey.
The Guardian says that the collapse was written in Istanbul's skyline. Showing a photograph of Istanbul's skyline dotted with high-rises, the paper said that they were all built with debt.
In some neighborhoods, however, the high-rises stay unfinished or unoccupied. In some residential areas hundred percent of the construction has stopped, according to a local real estate agent.
20% of recent growth in Turkey's GDP came from construction done with borrowed money.
The collapse of the Turkish currency will now have a bad effect on construction companies, which will not be able to pay their foreign-currency based loans.
Read more at >> here <<
★ 15th international Gümüşlük Classical Music Festival is continuing in Turkey's South Western town of Gümüşlük.
German piano master and teacher Professor Konrad Richter performed the works of Schubert this week. Richter was the Dean of
the Stuttgart Music School from 1986 to 1990. He directed a project named "Victims of Violence" for the discovery and promotion of the composers who were in concentration camps during the Second World War.
Richter finished the night with an encore.
In related news, although the festival has mainly classical music, this year
it will also have ethnic and jazz music starting on August 28. The first concert in this section will be by Blessing "Bled" Chimanga & Dreams Band from Zimbabwe. The band has been touring the world as a musical emissary of Zimbabwe.
★ Theater artist Cenk Dost Verdi was sentenced to 10 months and 15 days in jail for carrying out propaganda for an illegal organization on the social media. He was sent to serve his jail sentence in İzmit province.
Later on the social media account he asked what was considered propaganda for an illegal organization.
Observers say that the administration of the Justice and Development Party is using
the term "propaganda for a terrorist organization" for any type of criticism to silence the opposition.
★ Hakan Başar, a 14-year-old Turkish pianist will supply music to the American Yellowjackets Quartet, reports the Turkish daily Cumhuriyet.
An acquaintance of Başar contacted the Quartet after noticing how good he is. The Quartet then asked Başar to perform for two tracks on their upcoming album.
Previously Başar has performed at Istanbul and Akbank jazz festivals.
The Yellowjackets have been in existence since 1977. They have received two Grammy awards in 1987 and 1989, and nominated five times
for the same award. They have 22 albums published so far.
★ The third Istanbul Comics and Arts Festival will take place this year from September 7-9, reports the daily Cumhuriyet.
The venues for this year's festival will be Club Quartier and Moda Neighborhood's All Saints Church in Istanbul. Thousands of artists are expected.
The theme of this year's festival is "identity". The graffiti area of the festival will have four women graffiti artists, who will do live graffiti works. Among them is the first Afghan women
street artist Shamsia Hassani. Hassani is also a professor at the Kabul University.
★ The Belgian indie pop group Oscar and the Wolf were in Turkey's southwestern city of Bodrum for a concert on August 25.
In the concert the group was accompanied by Turkey's electronic music group Arem and Arman! and Hey! Douglas.
★ Turkish director Ali Vatansever's latest film "Saf", released to the world in English as "One Day
or Another", will be shown in the 43rd Toronto International Film Festival. The festival will take place between September 6 and 16. This will be the world premiere of the movie.
The film tells about the story of a couple who live in a shanty town
in the outskirts of Istanbul. When the rumors of gentrification of their neighborhood hits the streets, their lives change. The film has gotten the
support of Turkey's Culture and Tourism Ministry Film Directorate, and two German organizations.
The film is a coproduction of companies from three countries: Turkey, Germany and Romania.
EXCHANGE RATE for the U.S. dollar in Turkish Liras: 6.01
High and Low Temperatures in Degrees F, Weather
Ankara, in central Turkey: 97/68 Mostly Sunny
Antalya, on the Mediterranean: 86/75 Mostly Sunny
Erzurum, in Eastern Turkey: 84/59 Mostly Sunny
Istanbul, in northwestern Turkey: 90/73 Partly Cloudy
Izmir, on the Aegean: 88/73 Mostly Sunny
Trabzon, on the Black Sea: 82/73 Partly Cloudy
Black Sea measured at Trabzon 77
Marmara Sea measured at Tekirdağ 79
Aegean Sea measured at İzmir 80
Mediterranean Sea measured at Antalya 85
★ In the 2018 European Para athletics competitions, Turkish athletes
received a total of 15 medals: four golds, six silvers and five bronzes.
Hamide Kurt, gold, women's 400 meters
Hamide Kurt, gold, women's 200 meters
Zeynep Acet, silver, women's 200 meters
Mehmet Tunc, gold, men's 200 meters
- Zübeyde Süpürgeci, silver, women's 100 meters
- Öznur Alumur, gold, women's 400 meters
★ In the 13th Wheelchair Basketball World
Competitions, Turkey's men's national team rose to the quarterfinals.
The games are taking place in Hamburg Germany. In their last game the Turkish team beat their Dutch opponents 60-52.
The next competition will be against the Iranian team.
★ Turkey's national sailing team, did well in the Aarhus Hempel world championships in Denmark, and received the right to participate in the 2020 Tokyo Olympics.
[Saat 18:30 and 19:30 'da iki kez okuyun]
*** Sama Uyghur Cuisine on Decoto Rd. in Union City is giving our listeners 10% off! Call them at (510) 400-3300
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*** Turkish American Association of California
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charitable organization established to promote better
understanding between Americans and Turks.
if you have any questions about Turks and Turkey,
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*** The Turkish American Association of California (TAAC)
invites you to the
TURKISH BAYRAM BRUNCH (serpme kahvalti)
(Feta cheese, olives, tomatoes/cucumber, sucuklu yumurta, pogaca, simit, ...)
Sunday, August 26, 2018 at 10:30 A.M.
SULTAN'S KEBAB in Pleasanton, CA
(Hwy 680, Corner of Bernal and Valley Ave.
6654 Koll Center Pkwy, Pleasanton, CA 94566)
COST: $20 adults , $10 for children under 12.
Please RSVP to Nurdan Civi at
call/text (925) 818-0490.
Followed by TAAC's General Membership Meeting and
Board of Directors Elections (2018-2020) at 12 P.M.. noon.
Please become a TAAC Member or renew your membership to support and
promote the Turkish American Community and the Turkish Cultural Heritage.
Looking forward to seeing you at the brunch and the annual meeting.
TAAC Board of Directors
*** For more music from Turkey and the Middle East tune to
International Cultural Program with host George Geevargis.
San Francisco World TV Channel 29
Sundays at 9-10 A.M.
*** Yore dance invites you to:
Free Turkish Folkdance Classes.
Please contact with Yore Folk Ensemble for the details.
TELL YOUR FRIENDS who might be interested joining our group.
Yore Folk Ensemble
*** Azerbaijan Cultural Society of Northern California
The local Azeri community organizes many events throughout the year. Follow their activities through their web pages, or subscribe to their e-mail list:
Azerbaijan Cultural Society of Northern California
16400 Lark Ave., Suite 260
Los Gatos, CA 95032
*** Turkish schools in the Bay Area are starting: