Saturday, May 30, 2015

Turkey: Erdogan-Davutoglu poster breaks Guinness record

Turkey: Erdogan-Davutoglu poster breaks Guinness record

by Mustafa Pazarlı - May 29, 2015

4,709 square meter poster featuring Turkish president and PM enters Guinness Book of World Records as largest in history

ISTANBUL – A giant poster showing Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan and Prime Minister Ahmet Davutoglu side by side has entered the Guinness Book of World Records.

More:Turkey: Erdogan-Davutoglu poster breaks Guinness record

US considers airport preclearance centers in nine countries including Turkey - INTERNATIONAL

US considers airport preclearance centers in nine countries including Turkey

WASHINGTON / ISTANBUL

The Department of Homeland Security said on May 29 it is considering expanding airline preclearance operations to 10 new foreign airports in nine countries, most of them in Europe.

More:US considers airport preclearance centers in nine countries including Turkey - INTERNATIONAL

Opposition parties slam ruling AKP over democracy, economy, Syria - POLITICS

Opposition parties slam ruling AKP over democracy, economy, Syria

ISTANBUL

Turkey's three leading opposition parties slammed the ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP) over what they portrayed as a weakened democracy, worsened economy and botched Syria policy during their May 30 rallies.

More:Opposition parties slam ruling AKP over democracy, economy, Syria - POLITICS

Who are Turkey’s Jews? | Jewish Telegraphic Agency

Who are Turkey’s Jews?
SIDEBAR
By Cnaan LiphshizMay 29, 2015 4:11pm

ISTANBUL (JTA) – For centuries, Turkey served as a safe haven for Jews fleeing anti-Semitism.

The earliest records of Jews in Turkey date back to 220 B.C.E., but the area saw a major Jewish influx in the early 14th century, when Jews expelled from Hungary, France, Sicily and elsewhere migrated here. Their positive impact on trade convinced the land’s Ottoman rulers to welcome more Jews.

More:Who are Turkey’s Jews? | Jewish Telegraphic Agency

How Turkey's economy went from flying to flagging - and could get worse - Telegraph

How Turkey's economy went from flying to flagging - and could get worse

Ahead of the general election on June 7, the nation once hailed as one of the world's next economic giants is enduring a reversal in fortunes

More:How Turkey's economy went from flying to flagging - and could get worse - Telegraph

News.Az - Gold sales to Switzerland cut Turkey’s trade gap

Gold sales to Switzerland cut Turkey’s trade gap

Sat 30 May 2015 04:53 GMT | 7:53 Local Time

Gold sales to Switzerland have once again helped Turkey narrow its trade gap, this time dramatically to $4.96 billion in April from $7.3 billion for the same month the previous year, according to figures released by the Turkish Statistical Institute (TÜİK) on May 29.

More:News.Az - Gold sales to Switzerland cut Turkey’s trade gap

Turkish Jews staying put but eyeing exit amid president’s hostile rhetoric | Jewish Telegraphic Agency

Turkish Jews staying put but eyeing exit amid president’s hostile rhetoric
By Cnaan LiphshizMay 29, 2015 2:33pm

ISTANBUL (JTA) — In the backyard of the Etz Ahayim synagogue in Turkey’s largest city, congregant Yusuf Arslan hollers pleasantries as he mingles with other members of the small congregation.

More:Turkish Jews staying put but eyeing exit amid president’s hostile rhetoric | Jewish Telegraphic Agency

Turkey′s elections force maturity test on ′Spirit of Gezi′ protest movement | Europe | DW.DE | 30.05.2015

Turkey's elections force maturity test on 'Spirit of Gezi' protest movement

Protests in favor of preservation of Istanbul's Gezi Park snowballed into a movement of resistance against Prime Minister Erdogan in 2013. The "spirit of Gezi" could play a key role in Turkey's parliamentary elections.

More:Turkey′s elections force maturity test on ′Spirit of Gezi′ protest movement | Europe | DW.DE | 30.05.2015

The report card of 4 leaders, plus Erdoğan - SERKAN DEMİRTAŞ

The report card of 4 leaders, plus Erdoğan

Leaders of the political parties that will run in the June 7 elections have geared up their elections campaigns with consecutive public rallies, as well as media interviews, in order to reach more people and garner more votes, with less than 10 days to go until polls.

More:The report card of 4 leaders, plus Erdoğan - SERKAN DEMİRTAŞ

Turkey on the brink - Opinion - The Boston Globe

Turkey on the brink

By Robert Ellis May 29, 2015

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan’s vindictive assault on Boston Globe contributing columnist Stephen Kinzer, canceling his honorary citizienship of the city of Gaziantep and declaring him “an enemy of our government and our country,” is yet another example of the paranoia of an increasingly despotic leader.

More:Turkey on the brink - Opinion - The Boston Globe

Turkey's Quasi-Dictator Takes on The New York Times | Jewish & Israel News Algemeiner.com

Turkey’s Quasi-Dictator Takes on The New York Times and Democracy
May 29, 2015 5:21 pm 2 comments

For 13 years, Recep Tayyip Erdogan has worked to impose his Islamist vision on Turkey’s proud secular democracy, reshaping the country into a neo-Ottoman republic. His success can be credited in no small measure to his manipulation and intimidation of the press, and the occasional censorship of social media and the Internet overall. Now, in a gesture that betrays either Islamist imperialism, sheer ignorance of Western democracy, or both, Turkey’s president and former prime minister is expanding his reach, raising his fist – and, he hopes, his influence – at the West, using the New York Times as his target.

More:Turkey's Quasi-Dictator Takes on The New York Times | Jewish & Israel News Algemeiner.com

Erdogan tries to rewrite history - Al-Monitor: the Pulse of the Middle East

Erdogan tries to rewrite history

Scores of thick-mustached Istanbul municipality laborers dressed in historic Ottoman army uniforms, marching amid rush hour crowds in modern-day central Istanbul, some pulling replicas of 15th-century galleys by thick ropes, may not look out of place to certain eyes.

More:Erdogan tries to rewrite history - Al-Monitor: the Pulse of the Middle East

UPDATE: Turkish foreign trade deficit drops 32 percent in April

UPDATE: Turkish foreign trade deficit drops 32 percent in April

May 29, 2015

Deficit falls to $4.96 billion from $7.3 billion for the same month in the previous year.

ANKARA – Turkey’s foreign trade deficit decreased sharply in April, the Turkish Statistical Institute said in a report released on Friday.

More:UPDATE: Turkish foreign trade deficit drops 32 percent in April

Friday, May 29, 2015

Why Turks should vote Kurd | The Economist

Why Turks should vote Kurd
It is the best way of stopping their country’s drift towards autocracy
May 30th 2015 | From the print edition

Timekeeper

THE man who dominates Turkish politics, and has done so for 12 years, is not running in the general election on June 7th. As president since August, Recep Tayyip Erdogan is meant to stay above the fray. Yet the vote is still all about him. He is campaigning for the Justice and Development (AK) party that he founded to win a majority large enough to change the constitution into one with a strong executive presidency. It is to be hoped that he fails.

More:Why Turks should vote Kurd | The Economist

Turkey at the Crossroads: a turning point for democracy | Katoikos.eu

Turkey at the Crossroads: a turning point for democracy

EurOpinion 28 May, 2015

By Deniz Torcu

For many people, seeing the president of a democratic republic, obliged to be “non-partisan” according to his country’s constitution, publicly bashing the main political opposition parties in government while waving a religious text in his hand is something that comes as a shock and is difficult to comprehend.

More:Turkey at the Crossroads: a turning point for democracy | Katoikos.eu

Turkish civic society mobilizes against election fraud - Al-Monitor: the Pulse of the Middle East

Turkish civic society mobilizes against election fraud

As Turkey’s June 7 general elections draw near, the fate of the ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP) and President Recep Tayyip Erdogan hinges on whether the Peoples’ Democratic Party (HDP), an offshoot of the Kurdish movement, will overcome the 10% national vote threshold to enter parliament.

More:Turkish civic society mobilizes against election fraud - Al-Monitor: the Pulse of the Middle East

Turkey Makes Way for Tayyipism - Bloomberg View

Turkey Makes Way for Tayyipism
46 May 29, 2015 12:01 AM EDT
By Marc Champion

There's a new "ism" to add to the pantheon of Putinism, Chavezism, Kemalism (after Turkey's founder Mustafa Kemal Ataturk) and others. Now we have Tayyipism.

More:Turkey Makes Way for Tayyipism - Bloomberg View

Capital markets are the ‘second wing’ of the Turkish economy

Capital markets are the ‘second wing’ of the Turkish economy

Comprehensive reforms in Turkey’s capital markets over recent years have exceeded EU standards and bred confidence among investors, says the Chairman of the Capital Markets Board Vahdettin Ertaş

More:Capital markets are the ‘second wing’ of the Turkish economy

Istanbul gets ready to mark 1453 conquest

Istanbul gets ready to mark 1453 conquest

by Enver Faruk GÜNEY - May 28, 2015

– Massive coastal Yenikapi meeting area will host conquest celebrations for the first time

ISTANBUL – ‘Rise and revival’ are the themes which will mark Istanbul’s upcoming celebration of the 562nd anniversary of its conquest by the Ottomans.

More:Istanbul gets ready to mark 1453 conquest

Top court ruling on religious marriages sparks debate in Turkey - LOCAL

Top court ruling on religious marriages sparks debate in Turkey

ANKARA

Turkey’s Constitutional Court has legalized the right to be religiously married without obtaining a civil marriage, sparking debate over the decision’s impact on women and children.

More:Top court ruling on religious marriages sparks debate in Turkey - LOCAL

ING and BNP Paribas among bidders for HSBC Turkey -source | Reuters

ING and BNP Paribas among bidders for HSBC Turkey -source
ISTANBUL | By Asli Kandemir

ING Group NV (ING.AS), BNP Paribas (BNPP.PA) and Bahrain-based Arab Banking Corp (ABC) ABCB.BH have submitted bids to buy HSBC's (HSBA.L) Turkish business, a source familiar with the process said on Friday.

More:ING and BNP Paribas among bidders for HSBC Turkey -source | Reuters

Turkey’s Game-Changing Election - Carnegie Europe - Carnegie Endowment for International Peace

Turkey’s Game-Changing Election
Source: Getty
Marc Pierini, Sinan Ülgen Q&A May 29, 2015

The outcome of Turkey’s parliamentary election on June 7, 2015, will mark a pivotal moment for the country’s future. Postelection scenarios include, at one extreme, a move by President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan to centralize power in the presidency and, at the other, the possibility of a coalition government after twelve years of single-party rule.

More:Turkey’s Game-Changing Election - Carnegie Europe - Carnegie Endowment for International Peace

Cyprus leaders agree on new crossings on divided island - Yahoo News

Cyprus leaders agree on new crossings on divided island
AFP By Charlie Charalambous
May 28, 2015 1:44 PM

Nicosia (AFP) - The Greek and Turkish Cypriot leaders agreed Thursday to open more crossing points and link the mobile phone and electricity networks to help restore trust between their estranged communities on divided Cyprus.

More:Cyprus leaders agree on new crossings on divided island - Yahoo News

Ottoman-era boats return to Istanbul's waters

Ottoman-era boats return to Istanbul’s waters

May 29, 2015

$1m project sees classic craft return for tourism and transport on the Golden Horn

ISTANBUL – An almost $1-million dollar project has seen a fleet of Venice-style Ottoman-era historic boats take to the waters of Istanbul’s iconic Golden Horn.

More:Ottoman-era boats return to Istanbul's waters

Pera Palace: Where Progress Stayed in Istanbul | TravelPulse

Pera Palace: Where Progress Stayed in Istanbul

Thirty-three years ago yesterday, the Orient Express brand returned to the rails, connecting Paris to Istanbul on a 26-hour journey. Today, Belmond’s Venice-Simplon Orient Express only occasionally rides that legendary route. Many things changed between 1888, when the original train launched, and 1982 when the successor sporting the same name came roaring out of Paris’ Gare de l'Est.

More:Pera Palace: Where Progress Stayed in Istanbul | TravelPulse

Modern Turkish baths not just for scrubbing - Al-Monitor: the Pulse of the Middle East

Modern Turkish baths not just for scrubbing

The Turkish media reported May 23 that Madonna is having a Turkish bath, or hamam, built at her new estate. She is not alone in having discovered the hamam. The hamam is the retro-hip hang-out among Turkey's urban and trendy crowds. Turkish hamams have changed quite a bit in the last decade with the revival of all things Ottoman. Most of them are cleaned up and renovated, staying true to the unique traditional hamam architecture and environment.

More:Modern Turkish baths not just for scrubbing - Al-Monitor: the Pulse of the Middle East

Istanbul shows ferries have a future | Cities | The Guardian

Istanbul shows ferries have a future

Critics say they are expensive, slow and can only reach selected parts of a city but – with New York and London planning expansions – ferry traffic is on the rise

More:Istanbul shows ferries have a future | Cities | The Guardian

Turkey’s economic centre continues to shine - Business - News - The Independent

Turkey’s economic centre continues to shine
Thursday 28 May 2015

As the only city in the world that straddles two continents, perhaps it’s no surprise that Istanbul is filled with contrasts. While its opulent palaces and ancient domes pay homage to the bygone Byzantine and Ottoman Empires, the Turkish capital is a cosmopolitan hub with design-driven hotels, a lively nightlife and a strong contemporary arts scene. The city was thrust into the spotlight in 2010 when it was named European Culture Capital.

More:Turkey’s economic centre continues to shine - Business - News - The Independent

Canadian Solar Supplies Modules to Turkey's Largest PV Plant

Canadian Solar Supplies Modules to Turkey's Largest PV Plant
PR Newswire
May 28, 2015: 05:00 AM ET

GUELPH, Ontario, May 28, 2015 /PRNewswire/ -- Canadian Solar Inc. (the "Company", or "Canadian Solar") (NASDAQ: CSIQ), one of the world's largest solar power companies, today announced that it has supplied modules to Turkey's largest PV project, the Kayseri Organized Industrial Zone PV Plant.

More:Canadian Solar Supplies Modules to Turkey's Largest PV Plant

It's the Economy, Turkey: President Wages War of Big Promises - Bloomberg Business

It's the Economy, Turkey: President Wages War of Big Promises

The issue has helped Erdogan win every election since 2002 and will now help determine whether he gets the power to remake the nation

More:It's the Economy, Turkey: President Wages War of Big Promises - Bloomberg Business

Erdogan Seeks a New Turkish Sultanate | Al Jazeera America

Erdogan seeks a new Turkish sultanate
In June 7 election, the Kurdish People’s Democratic Party could play the role of spoiler
May 28, 2015 2:00AM ET
by Stephen Kinzer @stephenkinzer

Sultans ruled the Turks for 470 years until Kemal Ataturk proclaimed a republic in 1923. “Away with dreams and shadows!” he exulted. “I have banished the rottenness of the Ottoman Empire!”

A crucial election on June 7 may determine whether Turkey falls back under a form of sultanic rule, led by a supreme leader empowered to control every aspect of national life.

More:Erdogan Seeks a New Turkish Sultanate | Al Jazeera America

Chinese traditional painting show making a stir in Turkey | Shanghai Daily

Chinese traditional painting show making a stir in Turkey
May 28,2015

ANKARA, May 27 (Xinhua) -- A Chinese traditional painting exhibition was held Wednesday in the Turkish capital of Ankara, as part of cultural exchange between the two countries.

More:Chinese traditional painting show making a stir in Turkey | Shanghai Daily

Turkey Pushes Out Syrian Refugees to Save Tourism

Turkey Pushes Out Syrian Refugees to Save Tourism

The Associated Press

by Mary Chastain27 May 20156

Turkish authorities in the Muğla province kicked out 40 Syrians after business owners and tourism companies complained about the massive hordes of people in the park.

More:Turkey Pushes Out Syrian Refugees to Save Tourism

Turkish imams to be trained on sexual health matters - HEALTH

Turkish imams to be trained on sexual health matters

In an attempt to increase knowledge and awareness of health issues in society, the Turkish Health Ministry has launched an initiative to educate imams so they can teach and inform the people who come to their mosque for prayers on a variety of health-related topics, including sexual health.

More:Turkish imams to be trained on sexual health matters - HEALTH

Europe wants Turkey to enact personal data protection law - BARÇIN YİNANÇ

Europe wants Turkey to enact personal data protection law

The debate on the issues pertaining to Syria and foreign terrorist fighters (FTFs) is like a medallion that has two sides.

More:Europe wants Turkey to enact personal data protection law - BARÇIN YİNANÇ

New project seeks to prolong tourist visits to Istanbul - Daily Sabah

New project seeks to prolong tourist visits to Istanbul
ZEYNEL YAMAN
ISTANBUL
Published May 27, 2015

New project seeks to prolong tourist visits to Istanbul
As one of the world's top cities in terms of tourism, Istanbul fails to compete with Barcelona, London and Paris regarding tourists' visit time. To remedy the situation, new regulations will enable more space to be provided for tourist facilities

More:New project seeks to prolong tourist visits to Istanbul - Daily Sabah

ANKARA, Turkey: Turkey and the Islamic State: Clash of interests feeds suspicions | Syria | McClatchy DC

Turkey and the Islamic State: Clash of interests feeds suspicions

By Roy Gutman

McClatchy Foreign StaffMay 27, 2015

ANKARA, Turkey — Governments throughout the Middle East and well beyond look with suspicion on Turkey’s role in the war against the Islamic State.

More:ANKARA, Turkey: Turkey and the Islamic State: Clash of interests feeds suspicions | Syria | McClatchy DC

Off The Ballot But With Much At Stake, Turkey's President Fights For More Power

Off The Ballot But With Much At Stake, Turkey's President Fights For More Power
Posted: 05/29/2015 12:51 pm EDT Updated: 5 minutes ago
TURKEY ELECTION

ISTANBUL -- Turkey's June 7 election will elect 550 members of parliament, but it's really all about one man who isn't even on the ballot: President Recep Tayyip Erdogan.

More:Off The Ballot But With Much At Stake, Turkey's President Fights For More Power

Pera Palace Hotel Jumeirah celebrates Agatha Christie’s 125th Birthday

Pera Palace Hotel Jumeirah celebrates Agatha Christie’s 125th Birthday

Thursday, 28 May 2015 08:49
Published by Ozgur Tore

Pera Palace Hotel Jumeirah, Istanbul’s most iconic hotel, has announced a week long crime fiction themed festival called Black Week to mark the 125th birthday of Agatha Christie. Guests of the hotel can gain access to an exciting programme of panel discussions and ‘whodunnit’ nights, as world famous detective and mystery novel writers gather at the hotel to celebrate the literary genre.

More:Pera Palace Hotel Jumeirah celebrates Agatha Christie’s 125th Birthday

The general election in Turkey will test President Erdogan - FT.com

The general election in Turkey will test President Erdogan

David Gardner David Gardner

Many millions of voters hope the national poll will show the president his limits

More:The general election in Turkey will test President Erdogan - FT.com

Can the Kurds Stop Erdogan’s Bid for Total Power? | Foreign Policy

Can the Kurds Stop Erdogan’s Bid for Total Power?

The ruling AKP and Turkey’s increasingly authoritarian president are pulling out all the stops for victory in high-stakes elections.

More:Can the Kurds Stop Erdogan’s Bid for Total Power? | Foreign Policy