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x0x Turkish News for the week ending 27 May 2023

[This is a transcript of the news broadcast on 27 May 2023]

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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★ Since no candidate received more than 50% of the votes in the May 14 presidential election, Turkish voters will go to the polls again tomorrow.

  The political rhetoric from both sides was intense. Here is a review of the Turkish and world press on the elections:

  In a new fresh row between Erdoğan and his rival Kılıçdaroğlu, the opposition candidate deemed the President "protector of terrorists" and challenged him to debate "on your own channel," the Turkish daily Duvar reported.

  Duvar added that let alone opposition politicians, Erdoğan has not faced any opposition journalists during a live broadcast for years.

★ The pro-Kurdish People's Democratic Party and its sidekick Green Left Party have announced that they will continue to support Kemal Kılıçdaroğlu in the second round of the presidential race. They added that they "will change the one-man regime."

  The statement came a day after Kılıçdaroğlu and Ümit Özdağ, the far-right and anti-immigrant Victory Party leader, signed a controversial protocol, leading to concerns that the People's Democratic Party might boycott the elections.

  Ümit Özdağ declared support for the main opposition bloc Nation Alliance's presidential candidate Kemal Kılıçdaroğlu in the second round of the presidential election.

  The Victory Party was part of the ATA alliance. The alliance supported Sinan Oğan, who got only 5 % of the votes. After his defeat, unlike Ümit Özdağ, he said that he is supporting Recep Tayyip Erdoğan.

  After Victory and pro-Kurdish People's Democratic parties declared support for Kemal Kılıçdaroğlu in the second round of presidential elections against incumbent Recep Tayyip Erdoğan, the Justice and Development Party spokesperson Ömer Çelik argued the two parties "cannot come together" as they are "at opposite ends."

★ Reporters Without Borders said that it denounced the Turkish media's biased coverage of the parliamentary and first-round presidential elections held on May 14 and the presidential run-off between incumbent Recep Tayyip Erdoğan and opposition challenger Kemal Kılıçdaroğlu to be held on May 28.

  It added:

  Erdoğan, Turkey's ruler for the past 20 years, has done everything within his power to win these elections, including denying his fellow citizens the right to reliable, pluralistic news reporting.

  Over the years, all-out harassment and jailing of independent journalists on a massive scale, increased control over the state media, the purchase of Turkey's biggest privately-owned media group by a pro-government billionaire, and a system of subsidies for media outlets that support the president have given him control over 85% of the national media.

  Read the full announcement >> here <<

★ And the polls. Yes, the polls could not predict well the results of the first round of the presidential election.

  According to Bianet, the latest polls for the second round of the presidential election are out.

  AREA predicts that opposition candidate Kemal Kılıçdaroğlu will win by a slim margin. The remaining two, KONDA and ASAL, predict incumbent Recep Tayyip Erdoğan will win.

★ Slate wrote last week Elon Musk for caving into Mr. Erdoğan's administration.

  In an article, Nitish Pahwa wrote that Musk did not just do Turkey's bidding. He then added that censoring for strongmen is now a pattern at Twitter.

  On Friday night, the Twitter Global Government Affairs account tweeted a thread explaining that "in response to legal process and to ensure Twitter remains available to the people of Turkey, we have taken action to restrict access to some content in Turkey today." The account further declared that Twitter had "informed the account holders" affected and clarified that the restricted content "will remain available in the rest of the world."

★ According to the daily Birgün, the Turkish central bank's net foreign exchange reserves fell below zero for the first time in 21 years to -0.2 billion liras. The government completely depleted them to keep the exchange rate in check before the elections.

  Following an unorthodox monetary policy, President Mr. Erdoğan's administration has been keeping the policy interest rate low for months. Economists say during high inflationary times, interest rates have to increase.

  This week the Turkish central bank's monetary policy Board met and decided to keep the interest rate at 8.5%. The current inflation rate calculated by a group of independent economists for the past 12 months was 105%.

★ According to the Global Slavery Index, Turkey ranks among the top five countries with the highest incidence of modern slavery. First is North Korea, followed by Eritrea, Mauritania, and Saudi Arabia. The lowest incidence is in Ireland, Japan, and Finland.

  According to the Walk Free organization that compiles the index, modern slavery includes forced labor, forced or servile marriage, debt bondage, commercial sexual exploitation by force, human trafficking, slavery-like practices, and the sale and exploitation of children.

★ Three of the largest grocery chains in Turkey have made excessively high profits over the past five years, according to a recent report by Citibank, daily Bianet reported.

  The analysis report titled "Turkey's Supermarkets" delves into the impact of exchange rate and inflation volatility on retailers in the country, focusing on three grocery chains (BİM, Migros, and Şok) listed on the stock exchange.

  Despite the visible rise in the influence of the foreign exchange rates on the consumer inflation rate over the past two years, retailers have managed to sustain their sales and increase their profits without being significantly affected by inflation, notes the report. The reason is that major retail companies in Turkey directly pass on price hikes to consumers.




  A video on the award-winning ceremony is >> here <<
★ Turkish actress Merve Dizdar won the best actress award at the 76th Cannes Film Festival for her teacher role in Turkish director Nuri Bilge Ceylan's "About Dry Grasses," reports the daily Duvar.

  She became the first Turkish actress to win the award.

  In her acceptance speech at the prestigious festival, 36-year-old Dizdar dedicated the award to "all my sisters who… take action to strengthen the struggle of women, who risk everything and never give up hope no matter what, and all fighting spirits waiting to experience the good days they deserve in Turkey."

  Ceylan's 197-minute-long "About Dry Grasses" focuses on a young art teacher Samet hoping to be appointed to Istanbul after his mandatory duty at a small village. Samet's life changes after he meets another teacher Nuray, played by Merve Dizdar.

★ DROM, a New York venue for music, had a screening of a documentary on Turkey's renowned poet Nazım Hikmet today.

  The event took place to honor the 60th anniversary of Hikmet's death.

  A discussion with Dr. Selçuk Şirin, a professor in the Department of Applied Psychology at New York University, accompanied the screening.

★ There was another event in Russia on Nazım Hikmet:

  The "Nazım Hikmet Friendship Award" will be presented to two different names, a Turkish and a Russian side, as was done in previous years.

  Anna Anatolyevna Stepanova, Nazım Hikmet's wife and great love Vera Tulyakova-Hikmet's daughter and theater scholar and professor, were on the Russian side. On the Turkish side was Zeynep Oral, a theater critic, journalist, writer, and PEN Writers Association Turkey president. The participants talked about the cultural ties between Turkey and Russia.

  They received awards for their contributions to developing and preserving the Nazım Hikmet's literary heritage.

★ On May 24, the Turkish Philanthropy Funds hosted speakers Canan Güllü, Nebahat Akkoç, and Dr. Iskender Sayek for a panel discussion on "Advocating for Gender Equality-Turkey Earthquake Relief Fund Special."

  The panelists discussed their support, services, and work to promote gender equality and empower women.

  Canan Güllü is the president of the Federation of Women Associations of Turkey.

  Nebahat Akkoç is the president of the KAMER, the Women's Center.

  Dr. Iskender Sayek is the founder and chairperson of the Development of Health and Education.

  The Turkish Philanthropy Funds (TPF) is a nonprofit organization that aims to promote philanthropy and social innovation to support Turkish communities and organizations around the globe. TPF was established in 2007 to connect donors with grassroots initiatives and nonprofit organizations working in various fields, including education, healthcare, arts and culture, environmental sustainability, and social services.

  The Turkish pavilion at the Venice Biennale

  More about the Turkish pavilion is >> here <<

★ There are hopeful proposals in the Pavilion of Turkey at the 18th International Architecture Exhibition, Venice Biennale.

  Instead of demolishing abandoned buildings or leaving them to their fate, it focuses on transforming, listening, and understanding their stories. For this, the Turkish Pavilion has an installation titled "Ghost Stories: The Sack Theory of Architecture."

  Organized under the coordination of İKSV, Istanbul Foundation for Culture and Arts, the Turkish Pavilion is held under the auspices of the Turkish Ministry of Foreign Affairs, with the contributions of the Turkish Ministry of Culture and Tourism, and co-sponsored by Schüco Turkey and VitrA.

  The curators for the Pavilion are Sevince Bayrak and Oral Göktaş, founders of the Istanbul-based studio SO? Architecture and Ideas.

  The Turkish Pavilion will remain open until November 26.

  Read more at: >> here <<

★ On May 24, the "Beloved Istanbul" started at Galata Greek School in Istanbul to celebrate the completion of the restoration of the school..

  Dr. Fani-Maria Tsigakou and Hülya Bilgi curated the exhibition. It presents Istanbul-themed paintings from the Athanasios and Marina Martinos Foundation collections and church-related items from the Vehbi Koç Foundation Sadberk Hanım Museum collections.

  The paths of the Athanasios and Marina Martinos Foundation and the Vehbi Koç Foundation crossed when the Athanasios and Marina Martinos Foundation chose Ark İnşaat, one of the Koç Group companies, for the restoration of the Galata Greek School.

  The Athanasios and Marina Martinos Foundation sponsored the restoration and the exhibition.

  The exhibition will be on through November 12.

★ Poll Production is organizing a music festival in the Bosphorus.

  Artists such as Emel Sayın, İbrahim Tatlıses, İzel - Çelik-Ercan, Yıldız Tilbe, Volkan Konak, Hakan Altun, Haluk Levent, Serdar Ortaç, Özcan Deniz, Levent Yüksel, Hande Yener, and Zeynep Bastık will take the stage at Paraf Kuruçeşme Open Air Concerts.

  The concert series will continue until July 28.

★ Organized as part of the Sakıp Sabancı Museum's Turkish Painting on the Trail of Modernism exhibition, a series of conferences titled "Turkish Painting Talks" has begun.

  The conferences, held free of charge between May 25 and June 13, will focus on intergenerational interactions and moments of change in different periods of Turkish art history.

  During the conferences, participants will discuss chronologically the modernization process from the Ottoman Empire to the Republic of Turkey.

  The May 25 conference featured Dr. Zeynep Inankur's talk titled "A Multifaceted Identity: Museologist, Archaeologist, Educator, and Painter Osman Hamdi Bey."

  In addition to Osman Hamdi Bey's life story, Dr. Inankur's talk also discussed the paintings he produced for the Western art market, his subjects, and his techniques.

★ And some restaurant news now:

★ The blue Bosphorus and the colors of Istanbul's Historical Peninsula accompany the flavors of Murat Taşdemir in Octo.

  Located on the 9th floor of the 180-year-old Marriott Istanbul Bosphorus in Karaköy, one of the most important centers of Istanbul, Octo is among the restaurants recommended in the 2023 Michelin Guide.

  Octo has renewed its menu with the delicious touches of Chef Murat Taşdemir. Among the items in the new menu prepared by Murat Taşdemir, prepared with seasonal fresh and local products and blended with his techniques, are: 

★ Serving Istanbulites since 2005 and taking its name from the historical walls of Istanbul, Sur Balık offers unique flavors blending traditional Turkish taste with seafood.

  The restaurant welcomed the new season with seasonal and fresh flavors added to its menu.

★ The local Azeri Association announced they would restart language classes starting June 6. The teacher would be again Ms. Sevimli Könül.

  There will be three levels of classes:   The classes will be online.

★ The Film Acting Bay Area School's short film "The Sadist" will play at the Sacramento International Film Festival, Çelik Kayalar, the principal and the founder, announced.

  Çelik Kayalar is a Turkish-American, who trained as a bioenergetics scientist, turned to art and acting, and established the Film Acting Bay Area School.

★ Kuşadası district in Turkey's Aydın province entered a period of great change after Mayor Ömer Günel took office. The city draws attention with its natural and historical riches, museums, and cultural houses.

  As part of Mayor Ömer Günel's "City of Museums" project, he took many steps in Kuşadası. The city will host Turkey's first maritime trade history museum in Güvercinada Fortress.

  Mayor Günel and collector Haluk Perk signed a protocol to display historical artifacts at the Maritime Trade History Museum.

  A 400-year-old Caravansary in Kuşadası will host a Coin and Archeology Museum and a Porcelain Doll Museum. The museums will exhibit historical artifacts and 290 German and French porcelain dolls.

  Kuşadası Municipality will also open a museum about Turkish coffee, which has a history of 600 years, on the second floor of the Rosemary Memorial House.

EXCHANGE RATE for the U.S. dollar in Turkish Liras: 19.95

High and Low Temperatures in Degrees F, Weather
Ankara, in central Turkey        : 75/59 Thunderstorms
Antalya, on the Mediterranean    : 75/64 Thunderstorms
Erzurum, in Eastern Turkey       : 70/43 Thunderstorms
Istanbul, in northwestern Turkey : 70/61 Thunderstorms
Izmir, on the Aegean             : 79/66 Thunderstorms
Trabzon, on the Black Sea        : 68/59 Thunderstorms


Edited by Ertuğrul Korkmaz


Premier League

* Results for week: 33
Kasımpaşa       -      Istanbul          1 - 0
G. Saray        -      Sivas             2 - 0
Kayseri         -      Alanya        	 0 - 4
Adana           -      Beşiktaş          1 - 4
Ümrani̇ye        -      Ankaragücü        1 - 2
Antalya         -      Başakşehir        0 - 0
G. Antep        -      Giresun           0 - 3
Hatay           -      Fenerbahçe        0 - 3
Trabzon         -      K.gümrük          4 - 1

* In games played so far this weekend:
No games yet due to election

* Standing in the league as of week ending 33
 1 - G. Saray        79
 2 - Fenerbahçe      74
 3 - Beşiktaş        74
 4 - Adana           63
 5 - Başakşehir      53
 6 - Trabzon         51
 7 - Konya           49
 8 - Kayseri         49
 9 - K.gümrük        44
10 - Alanya	     41
11 - Kasımpaşa       40
12 - Ankaragücü      39
13 - Antalya         38
14 - Sivas           37
15 - Istanbul        35
16 - Giresun         34
17 - Ümrani̇ye        27
18 - G. Antep        25
19 - Hatay           23


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


*** 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@taaca.org


*** Azerbaijan Cultural Society of Northern California

Organizes many events throughout the year. Follow their activities through their web pages, or subscribe to their e-mail list by sending an email to:



Azerbaijan Cultural Society of Northern California
16400 Lark Ave., Suite 260
Los Gatos, CA 95032

*** Turkish schools in the Bay Area are starting:

There are currently three schools:
Los Altos, San Ramon and Berkeley
For more information on these schools, drop an email to trh@turkradio.us.


Our online school is starting in September. There are some innovations in our new term program, which we will start in September 2022.

We have prepared more enjoyable posts with your happy feedbacks from you.

 > By the principles of language learning; listening, speaking, reading, writing activities
 > Kitchen Workshop
 > Anatolian Civilizations
 > Interactive Games
 > Periodic Projects
 > Skill Workshops
 > Our Holidays
 > Bodily Activities
 > Traditional Music
 > About This Day

See you in September, love...

*** Turkish Folk Dancing with TUFOD in the South Bay

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Or visit their web pages at https://www.tufod.org/

*** Heart to Heart Anatolia
Providing scholarships and bringing people together while promoting Anatolian cultural values

Visit their pages at h2ha.org/