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x0x Turkish News for the week ending 02 November 2019

[This is a transcript of the news broadcast on 02 November 2019]

Courtesy of Turkish Radio Hour, producer of the

TURKISH CULTURAL PROGRAM, every Saturday from 2 P.M. to 4 P.M.

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★ The House of Representatives passed legislation this week calling for sanctions against Turkish officials in connection with Turkey's offensive in northern Syria.

  Turkey says that Turkish incursion into Syria was aimed at pushing the Syrian Kurds' militia YPG away from the Turkish border. The militia has been aligned with the U.S. military in fighting the ISIS

  A Turkish Foreign Affairs Ministry statement called the move "incompatible with the spirit of our NATO Alliance" and said lawmakers were "carelessly legitimizing a terrorist with their rhetoric and actions."

  Turkey considers the Syrian Kurds an extension of Turkey's Kurdish rebels that have been carrying out armed attacks on civilian and military Turkish targets since the mid-1980s.

★ U.S. special forces killed the ISIS leader Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi this week.

  While some news analysts claim that the U. S. kept a distance from Turkey and did not seek Turkish cooperation in the killing of the ISIS leader, some others claim that Turkey cooperated.

  Those who claim that the U. S. did not seek Turkish cooperation, point out that the U. S. did not use the nearby southern Turkish airbase of Incirlik. Read more at >> here <<

  While the other camp points out that Turkey opened its airspace to the U.S. helicopters.

  A Reuters article also claims that Syrian Islamist rebels aligned with Turkey occupying the area where al-Baghdadi was hiding were also trying to hunt him down for several months. The Reuters article says that the Syrian Islamist rebels may have passed some information on the whereabouts of al-Baghdadi to U. S. intelligence via Turkey. Read more at >> here <<

  After al-Baghdadi was killed, Turkey's ministry of defense issued a statement. In the statement, it said that before the U.S. operation the two sides' military authorities have exchanged information and cooperated.

  In related news, Turkey's Anatolia News Agency says police have detained three suspected Islamic State group militants who were allegedly scheming a "sensational" attack in the aftermath of the killing of ISIS leader Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi.

★ Turkey and Russia have held their first round of joint patrols in Syria as part of a deal that forced Kurdish forces away from Turkey's border.

  The patrols began Friday near the border town of Derbasiyeh, where Kurdish fighters have already pulled out.

  Turkey's Ministry of Defense said an initial patrol covered an area 87 kilometers long and 10 kilometers wide and said, "The first joint patrol was completed as planned." The Russian Ministry of Defense said the joint patrol included nine military vehicles, protected by an armored personnel carrier.

  The patrols follow an agreement that Russia and Turkey signed last week, which gave Kurdish forces 150 hours to withdraw from the territory along Syria's border with Turkey.

  Read more at >> here <<

★ Turkish Defense Minister Hulusi Akar said Thursday said his negotiating with Russia to return 18 people believed to be Syrian government troops.

  Akar said the soldiers were captured near the northern Syrian town of Ras al-Ayn, the epicenter of Turkey's October military offensive in northeastern Syria.

★ Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan's plan to return up to two million refugees to Syria is increasingly in question. With refugees carving out a new life for themselves in Turkey, many may be reluctant to return, while rights groups warn of forced deportations, Dorian Jones of the VOA reports.

  Analysts warn that Turkey's plan faces significant obstacles diplomatically and from the refugees themselves.

  Soli Özel, an international relations lecturer of Istanbul's Kadir Has University warns Turkey's plans of returning millions of refugees to Syria faces major obstacles, Dorian Jones adds.

  "I don't see any reason why (Syrian President) Bashar al-Assad will want any of those refugees back," said Soli Özel. "And he certainly will not take most of them back. I just don't see it."

  "We (Turkey) are stuck. We might as well admit it and then try to take care of those things unless we put them in trucks and dump them on the other side of the border, which I doubt we'll be able to do," Özel said.

  In a report released in October, Amnesty International accused Turkey of forcibly deporting refugees back to Syria.

  Read more at >> here <<

★ Intense clashes continue between Syrian Democratic Forces and Turkish-backed militants in the northeastern Syrian town of Tal Tamr, despite a U.S. push for a cease-fire, local officials said Friday, VOA.

  Read more at >> here <<

★ Turkish Interior Minister Süleyman Soylu on Saturday has said it will return "Islamic State" prisoners to their own countries after several European nations refused to take back terror suspects. He said Turkey would not be a "hotel" for foreign militants, reports the Deutsche Welle.

★ President Trump this week reiterated his administration's intention to keep some American troops in Syria to control the country's eastern oilfields, experts and observers warn the president's comments could promote the view that the U.S. involvement in the Middle East is to extort revenue.

  Many from around the world criticized Mr. Trump, among them, was the Turkish president.

  President Erdoğan said that the main objective of all countries involved in Syria, except Turkey, was to seize the natural revenues of the country.

★ An article titled "The US booted Turkey from the F-35 program -- now Turkey is in 'advanced" negotiations to buy Russia's Su-35 fighter jet" appeared on October 29 in the Business Insider.

  Turkish officials say that Turkey and Russia are in an advanced stage of negotiations.

  If penned, a Su-35 deal will be Turkey's second major purchase of weapons systems from Russia. Unnerving its NATO allies, Turkey acquired the Russian-made S-400 long-range air defense system. The S-400s were delivered to the Turkish military in August.

  Turkey may be buying 48 planes each costing $50 to $70 million.

  Read more at >> here <<

★ Writing in the National Interest, Kyle Mizokami says that Turkey has one of the most powerful armed forces in Europe or Asia, despite hundreds of on the offices being dismissed after the failed coup attempt of 2016.

  In his arsenal, the Turkish Armed Forces have about 300 F-16 jet fighters, the largest outside of U.S., more than a dozen submarines and several hundred German build leopard tanks.

  Turkey also hosts 90 b- 61 nuclear bombs at İncirlik Air Base in the southern province of Adana, with 50 allocated to U.S. Air Force pilots and 40 allocated to Turkish Air Force pilots.

  Read more at >> here <<


★ An offshoot of the US-based neo-Nazi group Atomwaffe Division Deutschland appeared to be behind the message, which featured Özdemir -- one of Germany's highest-profile politicians with Turkish origins -- at the top of an assassination hit list.

★ A new survey shows that 58% of Germans want Turkey expelled from NATO over the recent military offensive in Syria. There is even stronger German support for economic sanctions and export bans against the country, Deutsche Welle reports.

  However, former German Foreign Affairs Minister Sigmar Gabriel told Germany's daily Tagesspiegel that expelling Turkey from NATO would lead to a "new major security risk at the European Union's eastern border."

  Additionally, at last week's NATO meeting, members emphasized Turkey's strategic importance as a bridge between East and West. Turkey also has the second-largest army in NATO, after the US, making it a significant contributor to the defense alliance's military capabilities.


★ Volkswagen's powerful labor unions vowed to block the manufacturer's plan to build a $1.4 billion factory in Turkey until violence triggered by the country's cross-border offensive in northern Syria has stopped.

  The world's largest automaker put the project on hold last month after tensions escalated following the withdrawal of U.S. troops from Syria.

★ Bloomberg: Fitch Ratings raised its outlook for Turkey's sovereign assessment to BB- stable from negative, citing an improving current account balance, continued economic growth and falling inflation. The rating is on par with Greece, Bolivia, and the Dominican Republic.

  Read more at >> here <<

  ★According to Deutsche Welle, European Union Budget Commissioner Günther Oettinger has said the bloc should wind down its humanitarian payments to Turkey for looking after Syrian refugees. Instead, he said more money should be provided to Jordan and Lebanon.

  He argued that Turkey wouldn't be needing as much money because it was planning to resettle Syrian refugees in the "protective zone" it is currently trying to create in the Kurdish-occupied region of northern Syria.

  Read more at >> here <<

★ Turkey's economy czar Berat Albayrak presented 2020 draft budget to the Grand Assembly. It is a text-book example of "tax and spend" budget which will make Turkish citizens cringe because it introduces new taxes everywhere, as well as stepping up consumption taxes, says economist Atilla Yeşilada.

  Mr. Yeşilada thinks that the new budget will bring about a slump in domestic demand. Of 5% real GDP.

  He thinks that it also makes it impossible to reach the 2020 goal of 5% real GDP growth.

  See more at >> here <<



★ Pi Artworks of London is participating in Artissima this year with works from Turkish artist Osman Dinç and Kemal Seyhan among others.

  Artissima is an international fair of contemporary art, and it is taking place between November 1 through 3 in Turin Italy.

  Nearly 200 galleries from around the world will be present. In addition to the fair, Artissima is also composed of three art sections, headed by a board of international curators and museum directors, devoted to emerging artists, drawings and rediscovering the great pioneers of contemporary art.


★ A Neolithic-era temple with three mostly-intact steles unearthed at archaeological excavations in southeastern Turkey's Mardin province.

  The ancient temple is estimated to be 11,300-years-old. Excavations in the area were initially launched in 2012 in the Ilısu neighborhood of Dargeçit district in Mardin. Mardin is known to have been home to various civilizations such as Sumerians, Babylonians, Hittites, Assyrians, and Romans as well as Seljuk and Ottoman Turks.

  Ergül Kodaş of Mardin Artuklu University's Archaeology Department, who is the scientific counselor to the excavations at the Boncuklu Tarla (Beaded Field) site - the earliest known human settlement in the city - told Anadolu Agency that the newly unearthed temple belongs to the same era as the Göbeklitepe excavation site in southeastern Şanlıurfa province. Göbeklitepe is considered the birthplace of early civilizations.

  Kodaş said they had managed to unearth four steles, three of which were very well preserved, but that excavations are still ongoing around the temple.

  Kodaş noted that archaeologists have not yet reached the base of the temple, which was made of rubble walls and a hardened clay base, adding that it might take a month to reach the foundation.

  Stating that they haven't come across any figures on the steles so far, Kodaş noted that the 80-square-meter temple is similar to one previously unearthed in Göbeklitepe.


★ 7,000-year-old fortress with 7-meter thick wall uncovered in southern Turkey

  A fortress wall dating 7,000 years back to the Chalcolithic Age has been unearthed at the Yumuktepe Mound in southern Turkey's Mersin province.

  The Yumuktepe Mound is highly significant as a continuous settlement for 9,000 years since the Neolithic Age.

  Two and a half months of excavations at the mound are coming to an end on Friday. This year's excavations focused on the Neolithic and Chalcolithic periods, were carried out by a 30-person team led by Isabella Caneva - a professor of archeology at the University of Salento in Lecce, Italy.

  Caneva said that the 7-meter fortress wall discovered this season can now be shown to the public.


★ The 23rd edition of the Istanbul Theatre Festival, organized by the Istanbul Foundation for Culture and Arts (İKSV) will take place between 13 November and 1 December 2019.

  The festival will present a total of 78 performances by 28 theatre and dance companies – 12 from abroad and 16 from Turkey. The festival programmed also features a number of events within the scope of its Learning and Training Programmed including panels, reader's theatres, master classes and workshops with the participation of international guests and experts.

  This year, the festival's slogan is "life upside down." The festival will seek to answer questions such as "where is the stage?" and "who is the actor?" with its programmed consisting of performances with unusual staging technique and structure in which the generally accepted patterns of performing arts are questioned.

  The festival programmed includes Theatre de la Ville's Ionesco Suite, directed by this year's recipient of the festival's Honorary Award Emmanuel Demarcy-Mota; four productions from Russia including Vakhtangov Theatre's Eugene Onegin; the leading contemporary dance company Ultima Vez's show TrapTown; Wajdi Mouawad's play Incendies staged by the skillful director Murat Daltaban, who was featured in the 2017 edition of the Edinburgh Festival; and Io by the thought-provoking director Şahika Tekand, known for her innovative approach in bringing classics and tragedies to the stage.

  Performances such as The Circus, Eugene Onegin, Incendies, Io, For Rent, Tehran's Dream and the reader's theatre The Play of the Year will be staged with English subtitles.

  For the program see  >> here <<


★ Istanbul's Salon IKSV will host Makaya McCraven on November 15. McCraven is a producer, composer and drummer that un-restricts the limits of neo-jazz and blurs the boundaries between jazz and electronic music.

  He was born in Paris as a child of a jazz drummer father and a folk singer mother. In 2007 he moved to Chicago where he was surrounded by jazz legends such as Archie Shepp, Marion Brown and Yusef Lateef.

  The Los Angeles Times listed McCraven's second album, In the Moment, as one of the must-hear jazz albums of 2015, while Billboard named it among the top five jazz albums of the year.



★ The Philia project has organized a women's empowerment meet up in Istanbul on November 16. The event is promised to be a relaxed yet inspiring morning full of engage in discussions.

  This month's topic is "Global Sisterhood – Societal Expectations of Women" Exploring local perspectives towards Global Sisterhood. The attendees are invited to share their own views on the topic and listen to other women's stories and experiences.

  The event will take place at Kahveci Mustafa Amca Jean's on Istiklal Street, in Beyoğlu, Istanbul.


★ On the same day, Vancouver Film School will have a live audition at Istanbul's Hilton Harbiye Hotel.

  The audition will have a panel made up of Vancouver Film School faculty, alumni and industry professionals


★ Istanbul's Babylon will be hosting Ayhan Sicimoğlu & Latin All Stars with the organization of Atlantis Productions on Saturday November 16th.

  Pioneer of the Turcolatino trend, Sicimoğlu highlights the different colors of life by presenting travel and culture shows since many years, alongside being an artist who increased the popularity of Latin music in Turkey.


★ Tomorrow November 3, there will be a workshop for recent arrivals in Turkey to help them transform their homesickness into a new experience.

  Hosted by "Nuevo país, nueva vida" the went will take place at Nadas Istanbul, on the Asian side of the metropolis in Kadıköy.

  The venue is Nadas, a creative house supporting individual and community projects that value diversity of urban life and interconnection between people and environments. It hosts workshops, yoga, art programs, community events, and more.

EXCHANGE RATE for the U.S. dollar in Turkish Liras: 5.71


High and Low Temperatures in Degrees F, Weather
Ankara, in central Turkey        : 59/30 Mostly Sunny
Antalya, on the Mediterranean    : 73/61 Partly Cloudy
Erzurum, in Eastern Turkey       : 46/16 Partly Cloudy
Istanbul, in northwestern Turkey : 66/48 Mostly Sunny
Izmir, on the Aegean             : 72/54 Mostly Sunny
Trabzon, on the Black Sea        : 63/46 Partly Cloudy
Seawater temperatures:
Black Sea measured at Trabzon         : 64
Marmara Sea measured at Tekirdağ      : 65
Aegean Sea measured at İzmir          : 68
Mediterranean Sea measured at Antalya : 76


Edited by Ertuğrul Korkmaz


Premier League

* Results for week: 9
Rize Sp         -      Ankaragücü      2 - 0
Fenerbahçe      -      Konya Sp                5 - 1
G. Antep Sp     -      Alanya Sp       1 - 1
Sivas Sp        -      Antalya Sp      2 - 1
Malatya Sp                -      Kayseri Sp      4 - 0
Göztepe         -      Kasımpaşa       1 - 4
G. Birliği      -      Denizli Sp      0 - 2
Beşiktaş        -      G. Saray        1 - 0
Başakşehir      -      Trabzon Sp      2 - 2
* In games played so far this weekend:
G. Saray        -      Rize Sp         2 - 0
Konya Sp        -      G. Birliği      1 - 1
Trabzon Sp      -      Göztepe         0 - 1
Alanya Sp       -      Başakşehir      0 - 0
* Standing in the league as of week ending 9
 1 - Alanya Sp       18
 2 - Fenerbahçe      17
 3 - Malatya Sp      16
 4 - Trabzon Sp      16
 5 - Sivas Sp        15
 6 - Başakşehir      15
 7 - G. Saray        13
 8 - Beşiktaş        12
 9 - Konya Sp        12
10 - G. Antep Sp     12
11 - Kasımpaşa       11
12 - Denizli Sp      11
13 - Rize Sp         11
14 - Antalya Sp      11
15 - Göztepe         9
16 - Ankaragücü      9
17 - G. Birliği      6
18 - Kayseri Sp      4

★ Turkey's Çorum city is hosting Under 16 Chess Olympics. 48 chess teams from 38 countries are participating. The chess Olympics will and on November 5.

★ 41st Istanbul Marathon will take place tomorrow. Part of the marathon is run on the Bosporus Bridge connecting Europe to Asia. There will be 37,000 runners from 106 countries from around the world.

  A world champion athlete from Turkey Ramil Guliyev will run in the marathon to support people afflicted with MS. He will run with MS patients and raise funds.

★ In the women's 53 kg under 23 category, Turkish wrestler Zeynep Yetgil received a bronze medal in Competitions taking place in Budapest , Hungry.

★ Two other ladies won medals in the Tae Kwon Do European championships.

  In the women's 49 kg category Ruiye Yildirim won a gold medal, and in the women's 53 kg category Zeliha Ağrıs received a silver medal.

  The competitions are still continuing.

★ The 44th "Green Bursa" rally is continuing. The rally's course covers the historic Bursa city and its surrounding area, plus areas at the base of the majestic Uludag mountain, which in ancient times was called Mount Mysian Olympus.


★ Turkish paraplegic team received five medals, one gold, one silver and three bronze in the International Para Table Tennis Tournament taking place in the Netherlands.


★ In competitions held in Izhevsk, Russia, on the second day in women's 63 kg category Minel Akdeniz, and in men's 81 kg category Mustafa Koc received bronze medals in under 23 European Judo Championships.


★ The World Bocce Cup competitions started in Turkey's Mediterranean province of Mersin today. 36 bocce players from 12 countries are attending the women's competitions. 120 bocce players from 23 countries will be attending the men's bocce competitions.

  Competitions will end on November 9.


★ 200 sailboats raced in the Bosporus straight that splits Istanbul metropolis into two. One side of the straight is the Asian continent and the other is Europe.

  The team that won the race will represent Turkey in May in Britain in the renowned Southhampton Round the Island competition.

★ 2019 Whitewater Slalom Turkish championships took place in Turkey's North Eastern province of Artvin. The Barhal Creek was the venue. 45 athletes from Eight clubs participated in the 4 km race.



[Saat 14:30 and 15:30 'da iki kez okuyun]

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