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x0x Turkish News for the week ending 13 January 2024

[This is a transcript of the news broadcast on 13 January 2024]

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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Ahmet Toprak is the editor-in-chief. Your broadcast host is Ahmet Toprak.

[Uzun İnternet adreslerini radyoda okumayın, şu duyuruyu yapın:
"Look at the news section of our website for more details. www.Turkradio.us".]


★ The fight between the Constitutional Court and the Court of Cassation, two top courts in Turkey, is continuing.

  According to the Turkish daily Duvar, this week, constitutional court president Zühtü Arslan has said that their rulings were "final and binding" and it was "not legitimate" to disobey them while commenting on the Court of Cassation's, the top appeals court's, refusal to comply with their rulings twice. Mr. Arslan was speaking at a ceremony for law school students interning at the court.

  When the Constitutional Court ordered the release of jailed Turkish Workers Party parliamentarian Atalay twice, the court of cassation and other lower courts, presumably under President Erdoğan and administration pressure, refused to obey the rulings.

  The first ruling of the constitutional court was on October 25, 2023, and the second was on December 21, 2023. In both rulings, the court said that the sentencing of Atalay violated his rights.

  Parliamentarian Atalay is in prison for 18 years allegedly for attempting to overthrow the government of the Republic of Turkey during the 2013 Gezi Park protests. Most analysts believe the charges are baseless and an attempt by the government to silence its critics.

  Read more >> here <<

★ According to the Associated Press, on January 11, Turkey, Bulgaria, and Romania signed an agreement to jointly tackle drifting sea mines that have threatened Black Sea shipping since the start of the Ukraine war.

  The defense ministers of the three nations, all NATO members, met in Istanbul on January 11.

  Romania's defense minister Angel Tilvar criticized Russia. Bulgarian Deputy Defense Minister Atanas Zapryanov said mines postdate two ports, Kim locations networks, and key water infrastructure. Details are >> here <<

  According to the Maritime Executive website, the three nations plan to form a committee of naval commanders from Turkey, Bulgaria, and Romania and welcome participation from other Black Sea nations. In addition, a Turkish naval commander told Reuters that each country will assign a minesweeper and one command control ship to the initiative. Details are >> here <<

★ The local elections are approaching in Turkey. On March 31, 2024, Turks will elect their municipal mayors, district mayors, probably shall or municipal Council members, and village headmen.

  Here are the headlines on the elections:

  Pro-Kurdish Peoples' Equality and Democracy Party claimed that nearly 4500 people in their twenties registered to vote in Iğdır province in eastern Turkey, reports the daily Duvar. The party said that these people do not live in the province, and they voted in other provinces in the 2023 general elections. The registration addresses were three police stations, two buildings of the security directorate, and one building that is still under construction. Details are >> here <<

  The Equality and Democracy Party claimed on December 20 that the government made thousands of police and military personnel "mobile voters" and registered them at addresses that did not exist before in critical electoral districts in the run-up to the 2024 local elections, the daily Duvar reported.

  Details are >> here <<

  According to Reuters, Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan announced Murat Kurum, a former environment minister, as the mayoral candidate for Metropolitan Istanbul, the most coveted position after the Turkish presidency. Kurum will compete against Ekrem İmamoğlu, the current mayor. Mr. İmamoğlu wrested the mayoralty from 25 years of ruling Justice and Development Party rule, delivering a significant blow to Mr. Erdoğan's grip on power. Details are

  >> here <<

  According to news site Artı Gerçek, current Mayor Ekrem İmamoğlu said on Monday that local elections will deliver a message to President Erdoğan's government about the Turkish people's desire for democracy, justice, and the rule of law.

★ According to a survey by Yöneylem Social Research Center conducted between December 28-29, Turkey is navigating a fragmented political landscape dominated by the ruling Justice and Development Party and the main opposition Republican People's Party, reports the Bianet online news outlet.

  However, both parties are losing support. 33.3% of the people surveyed sided with the Justice and Development, 19.9% with the Republican People, 10.3% with the two rival ultra-nationalist parties of the Nationalist Action, and 5.5% with the Good Party. The pro-Kurdish Peoples' Equality and Democracy Party seems to have declined to 9.4%, falling 30% below its 2015 performance.

  Almost 60% of the respondents think the administration governs the country poorly. 73% agreed that the government's policies caused the economic problems.

  The government usually defends itself by saying that "external forces are attacking Turkey." The survey found that 53% did not agree with this assertion.

  Read more >> here <<

★ According to the Turkish daily Duvar, nine Turkish soldiers died in clashes with the rebel Kurdistan Workers Party on January 12 and 13. The rebels attacked a Turkish military base in Northern Iraq.

  According to the Associated Press, the clashes follow a similar attack in northern Iraq three weeks ago that led to the deaths of 12 Turkish soldiers. Details >> here <<

  After the attacks, the Turkish Army announced air strikes in Metina, Hakurk, Gara, and Qandil regions in Iraq and some areas in northern Syria. Details >> here <<

  Turkish forces have been carrying out a cross-border operation called "Claw-Lock" in Iraq as part of the country's offensive against Kurdistan Workers Party militants.

  The Kurdistan Workers Party, designated a terrorist group by Turkey, the United States, and the European Union, took up arms against the Turkish state in 1984.

★ According to VOA correspondence Ezel Sahinkaya Fatma Yorur, when it comes to gender equality in Turkish media, men are still dominating managerial roles, research by a journalist union has found.

  The Journalists' Union of Turkey, known as the TGS, released its latest findings on gender disparities in Turkish media to mark the country's Working Journalists' Day on Wednesday.

★ According to the Turkish service of DW, Turkey's Children and Women First Association took action to investigate the allegations that the Jeffrey Epstein case has connections to Turkey.

  The court documents claim that a Turk got involved in pedophilia and created a prostitution network and that children from Turkey got caught in the network of this criminal gang.

  The court documents claim a Turk helped children from Turkey fall into the hands of prostitution rings.

  Epstein was found dead in prison while he was on trial on charges of pedophilia, child sexual abuse, and establishing a prostitution network.


★ According to the Anatolia news agency, Turkish companies are winning African infrastructure and superstructure projects. So far, Turkish companies completed 1864 projects on the African continent, according to the Economic Relations Board of Turkey.

★ The U.S. dollar exceeded 30 Turkish liras on January 11 and reached an all-time high, reports the daily Duvar. Many economists considered 30 liras as the psychological threshold.

  Following the latest developments, investment bank JPMorgan revised its 2024 year-end forecast for the U.S. dollar to Turkish liras exchange rate from 34 to 36 liras.


★ The 16th Çukurova Book Fair, the first book fair of the year, started Saturday in Turkey's Mediterranean province of Adana.

  The fair, organized by the TÜYAP Adana Fair Organization in cooperation with the Turkish Publishers Association, opened its doors at the TÜYAP Adana International Fair and Convention Center.

  Three hundred publishers and nongovernmental organizations are participating in the nine-day fair. There will be 93 panel discussions, talks, workshops, and book signing events.

  Speaking at the opening ceremony, Turkish Publishers Association President Kenan Kocatürk stated that with the publication of 83 thousand new titles, the International Publishers Association ranked Turkey 7th in the world.

  However, he pointed out that in the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development assessments, 15-year-old Turkish youth came in 37th among 81 countries In reading and writing.

  Emphasizing that the only way for children who have become addicted to screens and the digital world to enter another dream world is by reading books, Kocatürk said, "It is clear that we have to raise a generation not only with the digital world but also with books."

  Adana Governorship, Adana Metropolitan Municipality, and Çukurova Fair Corporation support the book fair.

★ Applications are now open for the 10th Leyla Gencer Voice Competition, organized in partnership with the Istanbul Foundation for Culture and Arts, Borusan Art, and Italy's La Scala Theater Academy.

  The competition, open to singers between the ages of 18-32 from all voice groups, will award the first place 7500 Euros, the second place will receive 4000 Euros, and the third place will get 2500 Euros. The audience votes in the competition finals will determine the Leyla Gencer People's Award winner, worth 1500 Euros.

  There are also other awards:

  A three-month educational scholarship La Scala Theater Academy

  A La Scala Theater Academy Special Award

  The Borusan Istanbul Philharmonic Orchestra Special Award entitles the winner to give a concert accompanied by the orchestra.

  The British Royal Opera's Jette Parker Young Artists Program Special Award entitles the winner to receive at least five training sessions at the British Royal Opera.

  The Special Awards of Deutsche Oper Berlin and Tbilisi State Opera and Ballet will award one finalist to participate in a production by these operas.

  The application deadline for the competition is May 3, 2024.

  Ayşe Leyla Gencer, who lived between 1928 – 2008, was a Turkish operatic soprano. She was a notable bel canto soprano who spent most of her career in Italy, from the early 1950s through the mid-1980s and had a repertoire encompassing more than seventy roles.

★ Turkish Literary writer, musician, and screenwriter Zülfü Livaneli shared his poem "Mohsen's Last Breath" with his followers on his social media account. He wrote the poem for a child who died in Gaza.

I don't know if you heard
Right now
Exactly right now
On a Gaza street
I took my last breath.
Do you care?
I don't know that either
I was standing a minute ago
Now I am shattered
I'm on the ground
Last week, my uncle
Yesterday, my mother
Today, my brother and I
Without even knowing why we died
Tick ​​Tock
Tick ​​Tock
And the trigger was pulled

★ On January 8, the Contemporary Education Foundation's arts organization hosted the 100th Anniversary Festival concert with young artists who would be star candidates of the future.

  At the concert, Arya Su Gülenç (Piano), Bade Dastan (Violin), Deniz Şensoy (Violin), and Sofiko Tchumbridze (Violin) share the stage with world-renowned violin virtuoso Maxim Vengerov. The foundation's chamber orchestra accompanied the musicians under the direction of conductor İbrahim Yazıcı.

  Among the works performed was Prof. Utar Artun's composition, composed for the 100th anniversary of the establishment of the Turkish Republic. Artun, born in 1987, teaches at Berklee College of Music. He is an award-winning composer, film scorer, arranger, jazz pianist, and percussionist

  Borusan Otomotiv and Tektaş Clocks sponsor the concert.

  Founded in 1994, the Contemporary Education Foundation of Turkey aims to build a better life for humanity. It believes modern and quality education is a fundamental basis for this goal.

  The founders are Dr. Turkan Saylan, Dr. Necla Arat, Dr. Aysel Celikel, Dr. Oya Basak, and Gulseven Yaser.

  Read more about the organization >> here <<

★ On January 11, Borusan Philharmonic Orchestra, soprano Nino Machaizde, and tenor Jonathan Tetelman were on the stage for a New Year's concert.

  Carlo Tenan was the conductor, and the works of Verdi, Cilea, Catalani, Giordano, Massenet, and Puccini were in the program.

  Before the concert, Aydın Büke and Sungu Okan held an enjoyable conversation.

  The concert was at Zorlu PSM in Istanbul.

  Established in 1999, Borusan Philharmonic Orchestra is the cultural arm of Turkey's pipe manufacturer Borusan.

  Read more about the orchestra >> here <<

★ Istanbul Modern Cinema organized its 11th "Count Us In!" program this year.

  The program will bring the latest movies from Turkish filmmakers, from documentaries to fiction, from discovery films to productions that have not found space in theatres.

  The directors and crews of the films will also participate in the event.

  Some of the films had their premieres at renowned film festivals such as Berlinale, Rotterdam, and Tokyo.

  Türk Tuborg, a Turkish beer maker, is supporting the event.

  "Count Us In!" started on January 11 and will continue until the 25th.

  Find out more >> here <<


★ Bülent Ortaçgil, a veteran Turkish pop musician, was on stage today at IF Performance Hall.

  Ortaçgil was born in 1950 in the Turkish capital Ankara. He and his family moved to Istanbul after starting elementary school. He received a degree in chemistry from the University of Istanbul.

  He started playing the guitar at high school and participated in various musical ensembles. The Beatles, Cat Stevens, Donovan, and Bob Dylan influenced his music.

  He published his first album in 1974. Since then, he published nearly 20 albums and singles.

  The IF Performance Hall is in the Beşiktaş district in Istanbul.

★ The Istanbul biennial, organized by IKSV, the Istanbul Foundation for Culture and Arts, will be between September 14 and November 17.

  IKSV announced that Kevser Güler, a curator and researcher, will direct the biennial.

★ The Kore Torso, on sale in London, was returned with the initiative of the Turkish Embassy in London, Boz, Head of the Anti-Smuggling Department of the Ministry of Culture of Turkey, said.

  The statue originated from the ancient city of Miletus in Turkey's Aydin province in the Aegean region.

★ An academic has cautioned that the historic Adamkayalar (Men of Rock) reliefs in the southern province of Mersin require urgent protection from people looking to find hidden treasures and vandalizing them.

  Adamkayalar is a place consisting of reliefs and figures made on the slopes of the Şeytan Deresi Canyon (Devil Creek Canyon), overlooking Kızkalesi in Mersin.

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


High and Low Temperatures in Degrees F, Weather
Ankara, in central Turkey        : 37/23 Partly Cloudy
Antalya, on the Mediterranean    : 61/45 Partly Cloudy
Erzurum, in Eastern Turkey       : 23/10 Snow
Istanbul, in northwestern Turkey : 46/28 Partly Cloudy
Izmir, on the Aegean             : 50/36 Partly Cloudy
Trabzon, on the Black Sea        : 41/32 Snow
Snow depths at skiing locations:
Erciyes in Kayseri, Central Turkey      : 9 inches
Ilgaz in Kastamonu, North Central Turkey: 7 inches
Kartalkaya in Bolu, Western Turkey      : 54 inches
Palandöken in Erzurum, Eastern Turkey   : 58 inches
Uludağ in Bursa, Western Turkey         : 12 inches
Sarıkamış in Kars, Eastern Turkey       : 66 inches



Premier League

* Results for week: 19
G. Antep        -      Pendik            2 - 2
Antalya         -      Alanya            0 - 0
Beşiktaş        -      Kasımpaşa         1 - 3
Rize            -      Hatay             2 - 0
Ankaragücü      -      Trabzon           0 - 1
Başakşehir      -      Adana             0 - 0
Samsun          -      K.gümrük          1 - 0
G. Saray        -      Konya             3 - 0
Istanbul        -      Fenerbahçe        1 - 5
Kayseri         -      Sivas             1 - 3

* In games played so far this weekend:
Rize            -      Adana          1 - 0
Ankaragücü      -      Kasımpaşa      3 - 1
Başakşehir      -      Alanya         3 - 2
Beşiktaş        -      K.gümrük       3 - 0
Hatay           -      Pendik         1 - 1
Samsun          -      Sivas          -
Istanbul        -      Konya          -
G. Antep        -      Fenerbahçe     -
Antalya         -      Trabzon        -
G. Saray        -      Kayseri        -

* Standing in the league as of week ending 19
 1 - Fenerbahçe      50
 2 - G. Saray        48
 3 - Trabzon         36
 4 - Beşiktaş        32
 5 - Adana           29
 6 - Kayseri         29
 7 - Rize            29
 8 - Antalya         28
 9 - Kasımpaşa       26
10 - Sivas           25
11 - Başakşehir      23
12 - Alanya          22
13 - Ankaragücü      21
14 - G. Antep        21
15 - K.gümrük        20
16 - Hatay           20
17 - Samsun          18
18 - Konya           18
19 - Pendik          15
19 - Istanbul         6


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


*** Turkish American Association of California

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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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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
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 > Anatolian Civilizations
 > Interactive Games
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 > Skill Workshops
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 > About This Day

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

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