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x0x Turkish News for the week ending 22 February 2020

[This is a transcript of the news broadcast on 22 February 2020]

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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★ More Turkish soldiers died in Syria this week. According to the British daily the Telegraph, Syrian government forces are deliberately targeting Turkish military posts in the northwest of Syria.

  The Turkish military posts are there as observers for monitoring a cease-fire based on an agreement between Russia and Turkey.

  The Telegraph wrote the following on Friday:

  "Syrian government forces deliberately shot elderly civilians in the rebel-held north-west and sought out Turkish military posts for attack in direct violation of a ceasefire deal, intercepted radio communications shared with The Telegraph reveal."

  Read more >> here <<

★ Speaking of Syria, according to Jamie Dettmer of the VOA, the Kremlin was scrambling Friday to reach a stopgap agreement with Turkey to halt fighting in northwest Syria amid growing fears that Russia and Turkey are on the brink of open warfare.

  The skirmishes between the Turks and Assad's forces were triggered when Syrian rebels supported by Turkish artillery stormed a village east of Idlib city on a strategic highway. Turkish media said the Turkish army was directly involved in the ground attack. Kremlin officials say their forces weren't involved and that their warplanes held off striking Turkish positions.

  Russian defense officials condemned the Turkish military action and urged Turkey "to cease support of the actions of terrorists and handing them arms."

  While expressing hope an open conflict between Russia and Turkey can be averted, Kremlin officials warned that Russia would support al-Assad's forces militarily if the fighting escalates and Turkey increases its military operations.

  Read more >> here <<

★ In related news, Turkey asked the U.S. to deploy Patriot missile defense systems along the Syrian border. Turkey has not received a reply from the U.S. yet. Analysts point out that the deployment of missiles on the border may initiate a U.S.-Russia conflict.


  Turkish Defense Minister Hulusi Akar chats with his US counterpart Mark Esper at NATO headquarters in Brussels last week

★ Speaking of the U.S., a RAND Corporation report that we can summarized in our January 25 news has ignited concerns over a new military coup in Turkey, wrote Ragip Soylu on "Middle East Eye" site.

  The report suggested a new military coup attempt was plausible and that the Turkish defense minister was extremely close to the U.S. military.

  Read more >> here <<


  German flag at half mast after the shooting incident

★ A German man, described by the German press as a far-right extremist, killed nine people Wednesday night in Hanau.

  Five of the dead were of Turkish origin. There are an estimated 2 1/2 to 4 million people with origins from Turkey in Germany, making up about 5% of the German population.

  Before the killings, the 43-year-old suspected attacker published a manifesto and a video online, expressing his anti-immigrant sentiments and his hatred for Muslim countries.

  In the aftermath of the massacre, the German state and federal governments decided to increase protection for Muslim sites, similar to Jewish synagogues, which receive special protection from anti-Semitic threats. There will also be more heavily armed police at airports, train stations, and border crossings.

  Read more >> here << and  >> here <<

★ On Tuesday, a Turkish court acquitted 16 civil society activists being tried for the 2013 anti-government unrest and demonstrations that swept Turkey. The court said there was a "lack of concrete evidence" that the defendants were the organizers of the unrest to topple the government. Among the defendants was Turkish businessman Osman Kavala.

  However, within hours prosecutors issued a detention order for Mr. Kavala again on a different charge. This time Mr. Kavala is being accused of involvement in the 2016 failed coup attempt in Turkey. Observers say that this charge was dismissed a few years back.

  The ruling Justice and Development Party administration also asked for an investigation of the judges who acquitted the activists.

  In related news, according to the new site Duvar, Turkish prosecutors appear to have some case files in reserve to issue a warrant for a re-arrest in case Turkish courts acquit high-profile opponents like Kavala, the former head of Turkish judicial association YARSAV said.

  Read more >> here <<

★ As international condemnation increases over China's crackdown of the Uyghur minority in Xinjiang province, a growing number of experts and activists are criticizing Turkey over what they call Turkey's deliberate silence influenced by China's economic and political influence, reports Asim Kashgarian of VOA from Washington DC.

  Last October the Turkish government refused to join 23 nations in a joint statement to call on China to end violations against Uyghurs.

  Uyghurs and Turks share a common linguistic, cultural and religious heritage with Turkey, Asim Kashgarian adds.

  Read more >> here <<



★ Emin Mete Erdoğan will have a solo exhibition at Istanbul's x-ist on February 27. The exhibition is titled "Plants, Animals, and Buildings".

  Emin Mete Erdoğan was born in Istanbul in 1982. After studying at Escola de Arte Antonio Failde in Spain in 2008, he graduated from the Painting Department of the Faculty of Fine Arts at the Marmara University in 2010.

  In the exhibition, Erdoğan creates a world where there are no humans but one can still trace them through representations. In his new series, we see plants and animals in buildings where we hope to see humans. Inhabiting the building blocks that expand into eternity, these creatures seem to live in their natural habitat.

  "The name of the exhibition bears irony. After plants and animals, you expect to see humans. But, in this exhibition, I used buildings as metaphors for the human mind, instead of humans themselves," says Emin Mete Erdoğan.

  Erdoğan uses agonic canvases such as circular and elliptical ones. Using acrylic ink in his works, the artist aims to ask questions such as "can a human-made inanimate structure become nature? Is humankind opposed to nature or has it been a part of nature since the very beginning? What is the dialectic between animate and inanimate? What are the dynamics of the relationship between humankind and nature?"

  The exhibition will end on April 4.

  Read more >> here <<


★ The New Model Army, an English rock band will have a concert at Istanbul's Zorlu PSM Studio on February 29 to celebrate their 40th anniversary.

  Formed in Bradford in 1980, the New Model Army's beginnings were inspired by Northern Soul, Punk Rock, and the incendiary atmosphere of the times. Since then, they have had a long, creative, and eventful journey. They have been massively influential in post-punk, folk-rock, political-rock, goth, metal, and all kinds of musical sub-cultures, but they have steadfastly refused to belong to any club or style.

  ★Turkey's renowned pianist and composer Fazıl Say will have a concert in the Turkish capital Ankara on Sunday at Congressium. He will be accompanied by Bilkent Chamber Orchestra.

  Senem Demircioğlu will be the soloist.

  Say and the chamber orchestra will perform Mozart's Concerto number 12, Say's Silk Road and Walking Mansion, Beethoven's Moonlight Sonata, and Say's Ballad Opus 54 b for mezzo soprano and piano.


★ Istanbul's Sakıp Sabancı Museum has a new exhibition titled "Flux."

  Flux is a collaboration between Sakıp Sabancı Museum, Akbank Sanat, and Marina Abramovic Institute. They are marking a major survey of Abramovic's work and the largest project dedicated to performance art in the history of Istanbul.

  Flux is made up of:

  - A chronological presentation of Marina Abramovic's work,

  - 15 long-duration performances by Turkish and invited artists, and the Abramovic method, a public participatory installation.

  At Akbank Sanat, Marina Abramovic Institute is presenting a documentation series, using themes through the history of performance art to explore the legacy that explains performance today.

  Marina Abramovic is a performance artist and art filmmaker from Serbia. Her works explore body art, endurance art and feminist art, the relationship between performer and audience, the limits of the body, and the possibilities of the mind.

  The exhibition will be on until April 26.


★ One hundred years after its foundation, bauhaus imaginista offers a new interpretation of the Bauhaus as a globally connected institution and as a proposition of modernity, of the kind that drew its impulse from encounters and exchanges with various cultures.

  Consisting of an exhibition in four chapters along with a series of publications, panel discussions and symposiums, bauhaus imaginista is represented by the chapter Moving Away at SALT Beyoğlu in Istanbul.

  Moving Away, which details the diverse approaches to Bauhaus in separate sociopolitical contexts, is accompanied by the "Collected Research" on the project's international explorations and the "Pedagogical Adaptations in Turkey," an archival display and a workshop program by SALT for further introduction of local cases to this final edition.

  The exhibition will be on through April 3.


★ The Pera Museum in Istanbul has a new book titled "A Road Story: 180 Years of Photography".

  At the 180th anniversary of invention of photography and the first photography trip that took place in 1839, the book brings together interpretations and perspectives of photographers who explore the same route with today's techniques.

  French painter Emile Jean Horace Vernet, painter Charles Marie Bouton who is among the inventors of Diorama technique, and daguerreotypist Frederic Auguste Antoine Goupil-Fesquet departed from the port of Marseille in October 1839 to take photographs and returned to Marseille 6 months later in April 1840 .

  During their trip they visited Livorno, Malta, Syros, Paros, Naxos, Santorini, Alexandria, Cairo, Suez, Gaza, Jerusalem, Nablus, Nazareth, Acre, Saida, Deir Al Qamar, Damascus, Tripoli, Beirut, Larnaca, Rhodes, Kos, Izmir, Dardanelles and Istanbul.

  The book features artists Coşkun Aral, Laleper Aytek, Ali Borovalı, Murat Germen, Sinan Koçaslan, Yusuf Sevinçli, Alp Sime, Lale Tara, Serkan Taycan and Cem Turgay. The photographs they took during their trips to the stops of the earlier journey reflect a contemporary take on these cities with rich histories.


★ The ancient city of Hadrianopolis in Turkey's Black Sea region, estimated to have been used as a settlement area in late Hellenistic, Roman and early Byzantine times, will become an archeological site.

  Located 1.8 miles east of Turkey's Black Sea province of Karabük, the site is also called "Zeugma of Black Sea" due to its similarity with Zeugma in the Turkey's southeastern province of Gaziantep.

  Until now, surface excavations in Hadrianopolis uncovered two baths, two church structures, one defense structure, tombs, an amphitheater, one arch and dome structure, monumental cultic niche, city walls and various edifices in 14 different parts of the entire excavation site.

  Animals such as horses, elephants, panthers and a gryphon are depicted on the mosaics, which have brought the city its reputation.

  Also, the excavations uncovered skeletons in rock tombs, ancient coins, hairpins made of bones, an unguentarium, sometimes called teardrop bottle, and a tomb dating back to the 2nd century, as well as a 1,800-year-old votive plaque.

  Read more >> here <<


★ Turkey will bring back two of its stolen artifacts from Britain, the country's Ministry of Culture and Tourism said in a statement on Thursday.

  An ox-driven cart sculpture and a three-piece Sidamara sarcophagus, both dated back to 3000 – 2000 B.C., will be brought to Turkey from the U.K., said the statement. The Bonham Auction House in the UK had both artifacts for sale.

  Read more >> here <<

★ Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan announced 2020 as the year of Patara in a bid to promote and draw more attention to the ancient city .

  Patara was home to one of the world's first democratic parliamentary systems and was also a hub for ancient Egyptian traders.

  With its 6,000-year-old heritage, the region is also well known for the remains of the Lycian parliament building and its lighthouse-- possibly the world's oldest, as well as its tranquil beaches.

  The ancient city, located in Turkey's Mediterranean resort province of Antalya, has a strong case to make the celebrated list of UNESCO World Heritage Sites, according to a sector expert.

EXCHANGE RATE for the U.S. dollar in Turkish Liras: 6.10


High and Low Temperatures in Degrees F, Weather
Ankara, in central Turkey        : 48/30 Sleet
Antalya, on the Mediterranean    : 61/48 Showers
Erzurum, in Eastern Turkey       : 36/28 Snow
Istanbul, in northwestern Turkey : 50/39 Mostly Cloudy
Izmir, on the Aegean             : 55/41 Partly Cloudy
Trabzon, on the Black Sea        : 48/43 Rainy
Snow depths at skiing locations:
Erciyes in Kayseri, Central Turkey      : 61 inches
Ilgaz in Kastamonu, North Central Turkey: 56 inches
Kartalkaya in Bolu, Western Turkey      : 87 inches
Palandöken in Erzurum, Eastern Turkey   : 28 inches
Saklıkent in Antalya, Southern Turkey   : No snow report
Uludağ in Bursa, Western Turkey         : 54 inches


Edited by Ertuğrul Korkmaz


Premier League

* Results for week: 21
Başakşehir      -      Beşiktaş        1 - 0
Konya Sp        -      Göztepe         1 - 3
Ankaragücü      -      Fenerbahçe      2 - 1
Denizli Sp      -      Kayseri Sp      0 - 1
G. Saray        -      Malatya Sp      1 - 0
Alanya Sp       -      G. Birliği      0 - 1
Trabzon Sp      -      Sivas Sp        2 - 1
G. Antep Sp     -      Rize Sp         2 - 0
Antalya Sp      -      Kasımpaşa       3 - 1
* In games played so far this weekend:
Sivas Sp        -      Alanya Sp       1 - 0
Beşiktaş        -      Trabzon Sp      2 - 2
Kayseri Sp      -      Konya Sp        2 - 2
Göztepe         -      G. Antep Sp     1 - 1
* Standing in the league as of week ending 21
 1 - Trabzon Sp      44
 2 - Başakşehir      43
 3 - G. Saray        42
 4 - Sivas Sp        42
 5 - Alanya Sp       39
 6 - Fenerbahçe      38
 7 - Beşiktaş        36
 8 - Göztepe         33
 9 - G. Antep Sp     30
10 - Malatya Sp      24
11 - G. Birliği      24
12 - Denizli Sp      24
13 - Rize Sp         24
14 - Antalya Sp      22
15 - Konya Sp        20
16 - Ankaragücü      20
17 - Kasımpaşa       16
18 - Kayseri Sp      15


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

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*** Nevruz, the Spring Festival is in the offing! 

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if you have any questions about Turks and Turkey,
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*** Azerbaijan Cultural Society of Northern California

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Azerbaijan Cultural Society of Northern California
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