Context of Turkey


Turkey (Turkish: Türkiye Turkish pronunciation: [ˈtyɾcije]), officially the Republic of Türkiye (Turkish: Türkiye Cumhuriyeti [ˈtyɾcije dʒumˈhuːɾijeti] (listen)), is a transcontinental country located mainly on the Anatolian Peninsula in Western Asia, with a small portion on the Balkan Peninsula in Southeast Europe. It borders the Black Sea to the north; Georgia to the northeast; Armenia, Azerbaijan, and Iran to the east; Iraq to the southeast; Syria and the Mediterranean Sea to the south; the Aegean Sea to the west; and Greece and Bulgaria to the northwest. Cyprus is off the south coast. Most of the country's citizens are ethnic Turks, while Kurds are the largest ethnic minority. Ankara is Turkey's capital and second-largest city; Istanbul is its largest city and main financial cent...Read more


Turkey (Turkish: Türkiye Turkish pronunciation: [ˈtyɾcije]), officially the Republic of Türkiye (Turkish: Türkiye Cumhuriyeti [ˈtyɾcije dʒumˈhuːɾijeti] (listen)), is a transcontinental country located mainly on the Anatolian Peninsula in Western Asia, with a small portion on the Balkan Peninsula in Southeast Europe. It borders the Black Sea to the north; Georgia to the northeast; Armenia, Azerbaijan, and Iran to the east; Iraq to the southeast; Syria and the Mediterranean Sea to the south; the Aegean Sea to the west; and Greece and Bulgaria to the northwest. Cyprus is off the south coast. Most of the country's citizens are ethnic Turks, while Kurds are the largest ethnic minority. Ankara is Turkey's capital and second-largest city; Istanbul is its largest city and main financial centre.

One of the world's earliest permanently settled regions, present-day Turkey was home to important Neolithic sites like Göbekli Tepe, and was inhabited by ancient civilizations including the Hattians, Hittites, Anatolian peoples, Mycenaean Greeks, Persians and others.

Following the conquests of Alexander the Great which started the Hellenistic period, most of the ancient regions were culturally Hellenized, and this continued during the Byzantine era. The Seljuk Turks began migrating to Anatolia in the 11th century, which started the Turkification process. The Seljuk Sultanate of Rum ruled Anatolia until the Mongol invasion in 1243, when it disintegrated into small Turkish principalities. Beginning in the late 13th century, the Ottomans united the principalities and conquered the Balkans, while the Turkification of Anatolia further progressed during the Ottoman period. After Mehmed II conquered Constantinople (now Istanbul) in 1453, Ottoman expansion continued under Selim I. During the reign of Suleiman the Magnificent, the Ottoman Empire became a global power.

From the late 18th century onwards, the empire's power declined with a gradual loss of territories. Mahmud II started a period of modernization in the early 19th century. The Young Turk Revolution of 1908 restricted the authority of the Sultan and restored the Ottoman Parliament after a 30-year suspension, ushering the empire into a multi-party period. The Three Pashas took control with the 1913 coup d'état, and the Ottoman Empire entered World War I as one of the Central Powers in 1914. During the war, the Ottoman government committed genocides against its Armenian, Greek and Assyrian subjects. After its defeat in the war, the Ottoman Empire was partitioned.

The Turkish War of Independence against the occupying Allied Powers resulted in the abolition of the Sultanate on 1 November 1922, the signing of the Treaty of Lausanne (which superseded the Treaty of Sèvres) on 24 July 1923 and the proclamation of the Republic on 29 October 1923. With the reforms initiated by the country's first president, Mustafa Kemal Atatürk, Turkey became a secular, unitary and parliamentary republic. Turkey remained neutral during most of World War II, but entered the closing stages of the war on the side of the Allies.

Turkey played a prominent role in the Korean War and joined NATO in 1952. During the Cold War years, the country endured two military coups in 1960 and 1980, and a period of economic and political turmoil in the 1970s. The economy was liberalized in the 1980s, leading to stronger economic growth and political stability. Since 2002, the country's political system has been dominated by the AKP and its leader Recep Tayyip Erdoğan, under whom a decade of rapid growth in nominal GDP took place until 2013, which was followed by a period of recession and stagnation in terms of USD-based nominal GDP between 2013 and 2020, and high inflation as of 2023. The AKP government's initial economic achievements, which were financed through privatization revenues and loans, were overshadowed by democratic backsliding and an erosion in the separation of powers and civil liberties, which gained momentum after the parliamentary republic was replaced by an executive presidential system with a referendum in 2017.

Turkey is a regional power with a geopolitically significant strategic location. The economy of Turkey, which is a founding member of the OECD and G20, is classified among the E7, EAGLEs and NICs, and currently ranks twentieth-largest in the world by nominal GDP and eleventh-largest by PPP. Turkey is a charter member of the United Nations, the IMF and the World Bank; a founding member of the OSCE, OIC, BSEC, ECO, MIKTA, TURKSOY and OTS; and an early member of NATO. After becoming one of the early members of the Council of Europe in 1950, Turkey became an associate member of the EEC in 1963, joined the EU Customs Union in 1995, and started accession negotiations with the European Union in 2005. Turkey has a rich cultural legacy shaped by centuries of history and the influence of the various peoples that have inhabited its territory over several millennia; it is home to 19 UNESCO World Heritage Sites and is among the most visited countries in the world.

More about Turkey

Basic information
  • Currency Turkish lira
  • Native name Türkiye
  • Calling code +90
  • Internet domain .tr
  • Mains voltage 230V/50Hz
  • Democracy index 4.48
Population, Area & Driving side
  • Population 85279553
  • Area 783562
  • Driving side right
    Prehistory of Anatolia and Eastern Thrace
    Some henges at Göbekli Tepe were erected as far back as 9600 BC, predating those of Stonehenge, England, by over seven millennia.[1]

    The Anatolian peninsula, comprising most of modern...Read more

    Prehistory of Anatolia and Eastern Thrace
    Some henges at Göbekli Tepe were erected as far back as 9600 BC, predating those of Stonehenge, England, by over seven millennia.[1]

    The Anatolian peninsula, comprising most of modern Turkey, is one of the oldest permanently settled regions in the world. Various ancient Anatolian populations have lived in Anatolia, from at least the Neolithic until the Hellenistic period.[2] Many of these peoples spoke the Anatolian languages, a branch of the larger Indo-European language family.[3] Given the antiquity of the Indo-European Hittite and Luwian languages, some scholars have proposed Anatolia as the hypothetical centre from which the Indo-European languages radiated.[4] The European part of Turkey, called Eastern Thrace, has been inhabited since at least 40,000 years ago, and is known to have been in the Neolithic era by about 6000 BC.[5] The spread of agriculture from the Middle East to Europe was strongly correlated with the migration of early farmers from Anatolia about 9,000 years ago, and was not just a cultural exchange.[6] Anatolian Neolithic farmers derived a significant portion of their ancestry from the Anatolian hunter-gatherers.[7]

    Göbekli Tepe is the site of the oldest known man-made structure in the world, a temple dating to circa 9600 BC,[1] while Çatalhöyük is a very large Neolithic and Chalcolithic settlement in Anatolia, which existed from approximately 7500 BC to 5700 BC. It is the largest and best-preserved Neolithic site found to date.[8] Nevalı Çori was an early Neolithic settlement on the middle Euphrates, in Şanlıurfa. The Urfa Man statue is dated c. 9000 BC, to the period of the Pre-Pottery Neolithic, and is defined as "the oldest known naturalistic life-sized sculpture of a human".[9] It is considered to be contemporaneous with Göbekli Tepe. Troy was first settled in the Neolithic Age, with inhabitation continuing into the Byzantine period. Troy's Late Bronze Age layers are considered potential historical settings for the later legends of the Trojan War.[10][11][12]

    The Sphinx Gate of Hattusa, the capital of the Hittites
    The Temple of Zeus in the ancient city of Aizanoi in Phrygia

    The earliest recorded inhabitants of Anatolia were the Hattians and Hurrians, non-Indo-European peoples who lived in Anatolia, respectively, as early as c. 2300 BC. Indo-European Hittites came to Anatolia and gradually absorbed the Hattians and Hurrians c. 2000–1700 BC. The first empire in the area was founded by the Hittites, from the 18th through the 13th centuries BC. The Assyrians conquered and settled parts of southeastern Turkey as early as 1950 BC[13] although they have remained a minority in the region.[14]

    Following the collapse of the Hittite empire c. 1180 BC, the Phrygians, an Indo-European people, achieved ascendancy in Anatolia until their kingdom was destroyed by the Cimmerians in c. 695 BC.[15] The most powerful of Phrygia's successor states were Lydia, Caria and Lycia.

    Assyrian king Shalmaneser I (1263–1234 BC) recorded a campaign in which he subdued the entire territory of "Uruatri".[16][17] Urartu re-emerged in Assyrian inscriptions in the 9th century BC.[18] Starting from 714 BC, the Urartu state began to decline, and finally dissolved in 590 BC, when it was conquered by the Medes.[19]

    The city of Sardis served as the capital of the ancient kingdom of Lydia. As one of the seven churches of Asia, it was addressed in the Book of Revelation, the final book of the New Testament.[20] The Lydian Lion coins were made of electrum, a naturally occurring alloy of gold and silver. During the reign of King Croesus, the metallurgists of Sardis discovered the way of separating gold from silver, thereby producing both metals of a purity never known before.[21]

    The gymnasium complex in Sardis, the capital of Lydia

    Starting around 1200 BC, the coast of Anatolia was settled by Aeolian and Ionian Greeks. Numerous important cities were founded by these colonists, such as Miletus, Ephesus, Halicarnassus, Pergamon, Aphrodisias, Smyrna (now İzmir) and Byzantium (now Istanbul), the latter founded by Greek colonists from Megara in c. 667 BC.[22] Some of the most prominent pre-Socratic philosophers lived in the city of Miletus. Thales of Miletus (c. 624 BC – c. 546 BC) is regarded as the first philosopher in the Greek tradition,[23][24] and is also historically recognized as the first individual known to have engaged in scientific philosophy.[25][26] Thales is often referred to as the "Father of Science".[27][28] In Miletus, he was followed by two other significant philosophers, Anaximander (c. 610 BC – c. 546 BC) and Anaximenes (c. 585 BC – c. 525 BC) (known collectively, to modern scholars, as the Milesian school). For several centuries prior to the first Persian invasion of Greece, perhaps the greatest and wealthiest city of the Greek world was Miletus, which founded more colonies than any other Greek city,[29] particularly in the Black Sea region. Diogenes the Cynic was one of the founders of the Cynic philosophy, born in an Ionian colony, Sinope, on the Black Sea coast of Anatolia, in 412 BC.[30]

    The Sebasteion of Aphrodisias, a city named after Aphrodite, the Greek goddess of beauty. In 2017, it was inscribed on the UNESCO World Heritage Site list.[31]
    The Library of Celsus in Ephesus was built by the Romans in 114–117.[32] The Temple of Artemis in Ephesus, built by king Croesus of Lydia in the 6th century BC, was one of the Seven Wonders of the Ancient World.[33]

    The first state that was called Armenia by the neighboring peoples was the state of the Armenian Orontid dynasty, which included parts of what is now eastern Turkey, beginning in the 6th century BC. In northwestern Turkey, the most significant tribal group in ancient Thrace was the Odyrisians, founded by Teres I.[34]

    All of modern-day Turkey was conquered by the Persian Achaemenid Empire during the 6th century BC.[35] The Greco-Persian Wars started when the Greek city states on the coast of Anatolia rebelled against Persian rule in 499 BC. Queen Artemisia I of the ancient Greek city-state of Halicarnassus, which was then within the Achaemenid satrapy of Caria, fought as an ally of Xerxes I, King of Persia, against the independent Greek city-states during the second Persian invasion of Greece in 480 BC.[36][37]

    Anatolia fell to Alexander the Great in 334 BC,[38] which led to increasing cultural homogeneity and Hellenization in the area.[2] Following Alexander's death in 323 BC, Anatolia was subsequently divided into a number of small Hellenistic kingdoms, all of which became part of the Roman Republic by the mid-1st century BC.[39] The process of Hellenization that began with Alexander's conquest accelerated under Roman rule, and by the early centuries of the Christian Era, the local Anatolian languages and cultures had become extinct, being largely replaced by ancient Greek language and culture.[40][41]

    From the 1st century BC up to the 3rd century AD, large parts of modern-day Turkey were contested between the Romans and neighboring Parthians through the Roman-Parthian Wars.

    Galatia was an ancient area in the highlands of central Anatolia inhabited by the Celts. The term "Galatians" came to be used by the Greeks for the three Celtic peoples of Anatolia: the Tectosages, the Trocmii, and the Tolistobogii.[42][43] By the 1st century BC the Celts had become so Hellenized that some Greek writers called them Hellenogalatai.[44] Galatia was named after the Gauls from Thrace (cf. Tylis), who settled here and became a transient foreign tribe in the 3rd century BC, following the supposed Gallic invasion of the Balkans in 279 BC.

    The Kingdom of Pontus was a Hellenistic kingdom, centered in the historical region of Pontus and ruled by the Mithridatic dynasty of Persian origin,[45][46][47][48] which may have been directly related to Darius the Great.[49][48] The kingdom was proclaimed by Mithridates I in 281 BC and lasted until its conquest by the Romans in 63 BC. The Kingdom of Pontus reached its largest extent under Mithridates VI the Great, who conquered Colchis, Cappadocia, Bithynia, and the Greek colonies of the Tauric Chersonesos. After a long struggle with Rome in the Mithridatic Wars, Pontus was defeated.

    The Roman Empire at the time of Constantine the Great's death in 337. In 330, Constantinople (Istanbul) became the new Roman capital.

    All ancient regions and territories corresponding to modern Turkey eventually became part of the Roman Empire, and many of them retained their historic names in classical antiquity as Roman provinces.

    Early Christian and Roman period

    According to the Acts of Apostles,[50] Antioch (now Antakya), a city in southern Turkey, is where the followers of Jesus were first called "Christians". The city quickly became an important center of Christianity.[51][52] Apostle Paul of Tarsus traveled to Ephesus and stayed there, probably working as a tentmaker.[53] He is claimed to have performed miracles and organized missionary activity in other regions.[54] Paul left Ephesus after an attack from a local silversmith resulted in a pro-Artemis riot.[54]

    The Hagia Sophia in Constantinople (Istanbul) was built by the Eastern Roman emperor Justinian the Great in 532–537.[55]
    The Eastern Roman (Byzantine) Empire in 555 under Justinian the Great, at its greatest extent since the fall of the Western Roman Empire in 476.

    According to extrabiblical traditions, the Assumption of Mary took place in Ephesus, where Apostle John was also present. Irenaeus writes of "the church of Ephesus, founded by Paul, with John continuing with them until the times of Trajan."[56] While in Ephesus, Apostle John wrote the three epistles attributed to him. John was allegedly banished by the Roman authorities to the Greek island of Patmos, where he wrote the Book of Revelation. The Basilica of St. John near Ephesus, built by Justinian the Great in the 6th century, marks the burial site of Apostle John, while the nearby House of the Virgin Mary is accepted by the Catholic church as the place where Mary, mother of Jesus, lived the final days of her life, before her Assumption. Saint Nicholas, born in Patara, lived in nearby Myra (modern Demre) in Lycia.

    In 123 CE, Roman emperor Hadrian traveled to Anatolia. Numerous monuments were erected for his arrival and he met his lover Antinous from Bithynia.[57] Hadrian focused on the Greek revival and built several temples and improved the cities. Cyzicus, Pergamon, Smyrna, Ephesus and Sardes were promoted as regional centres for the Imperial cult (neocoros) during this period.[58]

    Byzantine period

    After defeating Licinius (the senior co-emperor (augustus) of the East in Nicomedia) at the Battle of Chrysopolis (Üsküdar) in 324 (thus bringing an end to the Tetrarchy system and becoming the sole emperor), Constantine the Great chose the nearby city of Byzantium across the Bosporus as the new capital of the Roman Empire and started rebuilding and expanding the city. He resided mostly in Nicomedia (modern İzmit) during the construction works in the next six years. In 330 he officially proclaimed it as the new Roman capital with the name New Rome (Nova Roma), but soon afterwards renamed it as Constantinople (Constantinopolis, modern Istanbul). Under Constantine, Christianity did not become the official religion of the state, but enjoyed imperial preference since he supported it with generous privileges.

    Mosaic of Jesus at the Pammakaristos Church in Istanbul. Byzantine mosaics are the most celebrated form of Byzantine art.

    Theodosius the Great made Christianity the official state religion of the Roman Empire with the Edict of Thessalonica in 380 and was instrumental in establishing the Nicene Creed as the orthodox doctrine for Christianity with the First Council of Constantinople in 381.

    Following the death of Theodosius the Great in 395 and the permanent division of the Roman Empire between his two sons, Constantinople became the capital of the Eastern Roman Empire. This empire, which would later be branded by historians as the Byzantine Empire, ruled most of the territory of present-day Turkey until the Late Middle Ages;[59] although the eastern regions remained firmly in Sasanian hands until the 7th century. The frequent Byzantine-Sassanid Wars, a continuation of the centuries-long Roman-Persian Wars, took place between the 4th and 7th centuries.

    Several ecumenical councils of the early Church were held in cities located in present-day Turkey, including the First Council of Nicaea (Iznik) in 325 (which resulted in the first uniform Christian doctrine, called the Nicene Creed), the First Council of Constantinople (Istanbul) in 381, the Council of Ephesus in 431, and the Council of Chalcedon (Kadıköy) in 451.[60] During most of its existence, the Byzantine Empire was one of the most powerful economic, cultural, and military forces in Europe.[61] Established in the Roman period, the Ecumenical Patriarchate of Constantinople is the oldest continuously active institution in Istanbul.[62] The First Council of Constantinople in 381 recognized that the rights of the bishop of Constantinople are equal to those of the bishop of Rome.[62]

    Great Seljuk Empire
    The Great Seljuk Empire in 1092, upon the death of Malik Shah I[63]

    The House of Seljuk originated from the Kınık branch of the Oghuz Turks who resided in the Yabgu Khaganate, on the periphery of the Muslim world, in the 9th century.[64] In the 10th century, the Seljuks started migrating from their ancestral homeland into Persia, which became the administrative core of the Great Seljuk Empire, after its foundation by Tughril.[65] In the latter half of the 11th century, the Seljuk Turks began penetrating into medieval Armenia and Anatolia. In 1071, the Seljuks defeated the Byzantines at the Battle of Manzikert, starting the Turkification process in the area; the Turkish language and Islam were introduced to Anatolia. The slow transition from a predominantly Christian and Greek-speaking Anatolia to a predominantly Muslim and Turkish-speaking one was underway.

    The Mevlevi Order of dervishes, established in Konya during the 13th century by Sufi poet Mevlânâ Rûmî, played a role in the Islamization of the diverse people of Anatolia.[66][67] Thus, alongside the Turkification of the territory, the culturally Persianized Seljuks set the basis for a Turko-Persian principal culture in Anatolia.[68][69][70]

    İnce Minareli Medrese in Konya (left), Çifte Minareli Medrese in Erzurum (center) and Divriği Great Mosque and Hospital (right) are among the finest examples of Seljuk architecture.

    The defeat of the Seljuk armies by the Mongols in 1243 caused the territories of the Seljuk Sultanate of Rûm (Anatolia) to slowly disintegrate into small Turkish principalities.[71]

    Ottoman Empire

    In the early 14th century, the Ottoman Beylik founded by Osman I started expanding its territory and annexing the nearby Turkish beyliks (principalities) in Anatolia. Within a few decades, during the reign of Murad I (r. 1362–1389), the Ottoman State began expanding into the Balkans, eventually becoming known as the Ottoman Empire. The Ottomans completed their conquest of the Byzantine Empire by capturing its capital, Constantinople, on 29 May 1453: their sultan and commander-in-chief Mehmed II thenceforth being known as Mehmed the Conqueror. Mehmed II further expanded the territories of the Ottoman Empire in Anatolia and the Balkan peninsula. His expedition to Italy (1480–1481), commanded by Gedik Ahmed Pasha, began with the Ottoman invasion of Otranto and the nearby areas in Apulia. The invasion, which had the goal of establishing a foothold on the Italian peninsula for a subsequent conquest of Rome, started on 28 July 1480 and ended on 10 September 1481, four months after Mehmed II's death on 3 May 1481.[72]

    Following the end of the Reconquista, which resulted in the expulsion of non-Christians (Jews and Muslims) from Iberia and southern Italy controlled by the Crowns of Castile and Aragon (and later by the Spanish Empire), a large number of Sephardic Jews and Andalusian Muslims emigrated to the Ottoman Empire during the reigns of Sultan Bayezid II and his successors, settling primarily in Istanbul, Izmir, Selanik, Bursa and Edirne.[73]

    Topkapı and Dolmabahçe palaces in Istanbul were the primary residences of the Ottoman Sultans in 1465–1856[74] and 1856–1922,[75] respectively.

    In 1514, Sultan Selim I (1512–1520) successfully expanded the empire's borders by defeating Shah Ismail I of the Safavid dynasty in the Battle of Chaldiran. In 1517, Selim I expanded Ottoman rule into Algeria and Egypt, and created a naval presence in the Red Sea. Subsequently, a contest started between the Ottoman and Portuguese empires to become the dominant sea power in the Indian Ocean, with a number of naval battles in the Red Sea, the Arabian Sea and the Persian Gulf. The Portuguese presence in the Indian Ocean was perceived as a threat to the Ottoman monopoly over the ancient trade routes between East Asia and Western Europe. Despite the increasingly prominent European presence, the Ottoman Empire's trade with the east continued to flourish until the second half of the 18th century.[76]

    The Ottoman Empire's power and prestige peaked in the 16th and 17th centuries, particularly during the reign of Suleiman the Magnificent, who personally instituted major legislative changes relating to society, education, taxation and criminal law.

    The empire was often at odds with the Holy Roman Empire in its steady advance towards Central Europe through the Balkans and the southern part of the Polish–Lithuanian Commonwealth.[77]

    The Ottoman Navy contended with several Holy Leagues, such as those in 1538, 1571, 1684 and 1717 (composed primarily of Habsburg Spain, the Republic of Genoa, the Republic of Venice, the Knights of St. John, the Papal States, the Grand Duchy of Tuscany and the Duchy of Savoy), for the control of the Mediterranean Sea.

    The second Ottoman siege of Vienna in 1683 (the first siege was in 1529) initiated the Great Turkish War (1683–1699) between the Ottomans and the Holy League.

    In the east, the Ottomans were often at war with Safavid Persia over conflicts between the 16th and 18th centuries.[78] The Ottoman wars with Persia continued as the Zand, Afsharid, and Qajar dynasties succeeded the Safavids in Iran, until the first half of the 19th century.

    Even further east, there was an extension of the Habsburg-Ottoman conflict, in that the Ottomans also had to send soldiers to their farthest and easternmost vassal and territory, the Aceh Sultanate[79][80] in Southeast Asia, to defend it from European colonizers as well as the Latino invaders who had crossed from Latin America and had Christianized the formerly Muslim-dominated Philippines.[81]

    From the 16th to the 20th centuries, the Ottoman Empire also fought twelve wars with the Russian Tsardom and Empire. These were initially about Ottoman territorial expansion and consolidation in southeastern and eastern Europe; but starting from the Russo-Turkish War (1768–1774), they became more about the survival of the Ottoman Empire, which had begun to lose its strategic territories on the northern Black Sea coast to the advancing Russians.

    From the second half of the 18th century onwards, the Ottoman Empire began to decline. The Tanzimat reforms, initiated by Mahmud II in 1839, aimed to modernize the Ottoman state in line with the progress that had been made in Western Europe. The efforts of Midhat Pasha during the late Tanzimat era led the Ottoman constitutional movement of 1876, which introduced the First Constitutional Era, but these efforts proved to be inadequate in most fields, and failed to stop the dissolution of the empire.[82]

    The Süleymaniye Mosque is the largest Ottoman imperial mosque in Istanbul, located on the Third Hill in the city's historical peninsula. The mosque was commissioned by Suleiman the Magnificent and designed by the imperial architect Mimar Sinan.

    As the empire gradually shrank in size, military power and wealth; especially after the Ottoman economic crisis and default in 1875[83] which led to uprisings in the Balkan provinces that culminated in the Russo-Turkish War (1877–1878); many Balkan Muslims migrated to the Empire's heartland in Anatolia,[84][85] along with the Circassians fleeing the Russian conquest of the Caucasus. According to some estimates, 800,000 Muslim Circassians died during the Circassian genocide in the territory of present-day Russia, the survivors of which sought refuge in the Ottoman Empire, mostly settling in the provinces of present-day Turkey. The decline of the Ottoman Empire led to a rise in nationalist sentiment among its various subject peoples, leading to increased ethnic tensions which occasionally burst into violence, such as the Hamidian massacres of Armenians, which claimed up to 300,000 lives.[86]

    The loss of Rumelia (Ottoman territories in Europe) with the First Balkan War (1912–1913) was followed by the arrival of millions of Muslim refugees (muhacir) to Istanbul and Anatolia.[87] Historically, the Rumelia Eyalet and Anatolia Eyalet had formed the administrative core of the Ottoman Empire, with their governors titled Beylerbeyi participating in the Sultan's Divan, so the loss of all Balkan provinces beyond the Midye-Enez border line according to the London Conference of 1912–13 and the Treaty of London (1913) was a major shock for the Ottoman society and led to the 1913 Ottoman coup d'état. In the Second Balkan War (1913) the Ottomans managed to recover their former capital Edirne (Adrianople) and its surrounding areas in East Thrace, which was formalized with the Treaty of Constantinople (1913). The 1913 coup d'état effectively put the country under the control of the Three Pashas, making sultans Mehmed V and Mehmed VI largely symbolic figureheads with no real political power.

    Monarchs of the Central Powers on a WWI postcard:Kaiser Wilhelm II of Germany;Kaiser and King Franz Joseph of Austria-Hungary;Sultan Mehmed V of the Ottoman Empire;Tsar Ferdinand I of Bulgaria

    The Ottoman Empire entered World War I on the side of the Central Powers and was ultimately defeated. The Ottomans successfully defended the Dardanelles strait during the Gallipoli campaign (1915–1916) and achieved initial victories against British forces in the first two years of the Mesopotamian campaign, such as the Siege of Kut (1915–1916); but the Arab Revolt (1916–1918) turned the tide against the Ottomans in the Middle East. In the Caucasus campaign, however, the Russian forces had the upper hand from the beginning, especially after the Battle of Sarikamish (1914–1915). Russian forces advanced into northeastern Anatolia and controlled the major cities there until retreating from World War I with the Treaty of Brest-Litovsk following the Russian Revolution (1917). During the war, the empire's Armenian subjects were deported to Syria as part of the Armenian genocide. As a result, an estimated 600,000[88] to more than 1 million,[88] or up to 1.5 million[89][90][91] Armenians were killed. The Turkish government has refused to acknowledge[92][93] the events as genocide and states that Armenians were only "relocated" from the eastern war zone.[94] Genocidal campaigns were also committed against the empire's other minority groups such as the Assyrians and Greeks.[95][96][97]

    Following the Armistice of Mudros in 1918, the victorious Allied Powers sought to partition the Ottoman state through the 1920 Treaty of Sèvres.[98]

    Republic of Turkey
    Mustafa Kemal Atatürk, founder and first President of the Turkish Republic, with the Liberal Republican Party leader Fethi Okyar (right) and Nermin Kırdar (Fethi Okyar's daughter) in Yalova, 13 August 1930

    The occupation of Istanbul (1918) and İzmir (1919) by the Allies in the aftermath of World War I initiated the Turkish National Movement. Under the leadership of Mustafa Kemal Pasha, a military commander who had distinguished himself during the Battle of Gallipoli, the Turkish War of Independence (1919–1923) was waged with the aim of revoking the terms of the Treaty of Sèvres (1920).[99]

    In 1922, the Greek, Armenian and French armies had been expelled,[100] and the Turkish Provisional Government in Ankara, which had declared itself the legitimate government of the country on 23 April 1920, started to formalize the legal transition from the old Ottoman into the new Republican political system. On 1 November 1922, the Turkish Parliament in Ankara formally abolished the Sultanate, thus ending 623 years of monarchical Ottoman rule.

    The Treaty of Lausanne of 24 July 1923, which superseded the Treaty of Sèvres,[98][99] led to the international recognition of the sovereignty of the newly formed "Republic of Turkey" as the successor state of the Ottoman Empire, and the republic was officially proclaimed on 29 October 1923 in Ankara, the country's new capital.[101] The Lausanne Convention stipulated a population exchange between Greece and Turkey.[102]

    Eighteen female deputies joined the Turkish Parliament with the 1935 general elections. Turkish women gained the right to vote and to hold elected office as a mark of the far-reaching social changes initiated by Atatürk.[103]

    Mustafa Kemal became the republic's first President and introduced many reforms. The reforms aimed to transform the old religion-based and multi-communal Ottoman constitutional monarchy into a Turkish nation state that would be governed as a parliamentary republic under a secular constitution.[104] With the Surname Law of 1934, the Turkish Parliament bestowed upon Mustafa Kemal the honorific surname "Atatürk" (Father Turk).[99]

    The Montreux Convention (1936) restored Turkey's control over the Turkish Straits, including the right to militarize the coastlines of the Dardanelles and Bosporus straits and the Sea of Marmara, and to block maritime traffic in wartime.[105]

    After the establishment of the republic, some Kurdish and Zaza tribes, which were feudal (manorial) communities led by chieftains (agha) during the Ottoman era, became discontent about Atatürk's reforms aiming to modernize the country, such as secularism (the Sheikh Said rebellion, 1925)[106] and land reform (the Dersim rebellion, 1937–1938),[107] and staged armed revolts.

    İsmet İnönü became the country's second president following Atatürk's death on 10 November 1938. In 1939, the Republic of Hatay voted in favor of joining Turkey with a referendum. Turkey remained neutral during most of World War II, but entered the closing stages of the war on the side of the Allies on 23 February 1945. Later that year, Turkey became a charter member of the United Nations.[108] In 1950 Turkey became a member of the Council of Europe.

    Roosevelt, İnönü and Churchill at the Second Cairo Conference, 1943

    The Democrat Party won the 1950, 1954 and 1957 general elections and remained in power for a decade, with Adnan Menderes as the prime minister and Celâl Bayar as the president. After fighting as part of the UN forces in the Korean War, Turkey joined NATO in 1952, becoming a bulwark against Soviet expansion into the Mediterranean. Turkey subsequently became a founding member of the OECD in 1961, and an associate member of the EEC in 1963.[109]

    The country's transition to multi-party democracy was interrupted by military coups in 1960 and 1980, as well as by military memorandums in 1971 and 1997.[110][111] Between 1960 and the end of the 20th century, the prominent leaders in Turkish politics who achieved multiple election victories were Süleyman Demirel, Bülent Ecevit and Turgut Özal. Tansu Çiller became the first female prime minister of Turkey in 1993.

    Following the liberalization of the economy in the 1980s, Turkey experienced stronger GDP growth and greater political stability in the last two decades of the 20th century; but inflation remained high throughout this period, and the GDP growth was interrupted by three economic crises in 1990, 1994 and 2000–2001.[112]

    Anıtkabir, the mausoleum of Mustafa Kemal Atatürk in Ankara, is visited by crowds during national holidays, such as Republic Day on 29 October.

    Turkey applied for full membership of the EEC in 1987, joined the European Union Customs Union in 1995 and started accession negotiations with the European Union in 2005.[113][114] In a non-binding vote on 13 March 2019, the European Parliament called on the EU governments to suspend EU accession talks with Turkey, citing violations of human rights and the rule of law; but the negotiations, effectively on hold since 2018, remain active as of 2023.[115]

    In 2014, Turkish prime minister Recep Tayyip Erdoğan won Turkey's first presidential election.[116] On 15 July 2016, an unsuccessful coup attempt tried to oust the government.[117]

    With a referendum in 2017, the parliamentary republic has been replaced by an executive presidential system. The office of the prime minister has been abolished and its powers and duties have been transferred to the president. On the referendum day, while the voting was still underway, the Supreme Electoral Council of Turkey lifted a rule that required each ballot to have an official stamp.[118] The opposition parties have claimed that as many as 2.5 million ballots without a stamp were accepted as valid.[118]

    In 2018, Erdoğan won the presidential election for a second term, which ends in 2023. The 2023 Turkish presidential election is scheduled to take place on 18 June 2023 as part of the 2023 general elections, alongside parliamentary elections. President Erdoğan has signalled that the election might be held early, on 14 May 2023.[119] According to Article 101 of the Constitution of Turkey: "A person can be elected as President maximum two times" (Turkish: "Bir kimse en fazla iki defa Cumhurbaşkanı seçilebilir").[120][121] No amendments have been made to this definition in Article 101 with the referendum in 2017.[120][121]

    ^ a b "The World's First Temple". Archaeology magazine. November–December 2008. p. 23. ^ a b Cite error: The named reference SteadmanMcMahon20112 was invoked but never defined (see the help page). ^ "The Position of Anatolian" (PDF). Archived from the original (PDF) on 2 March 2012. Retrieved 4 May 2013. ^ Balter, Michael (27 February 2004). "Search for the Indo-Europeans: Were Kurgan horsemen or Anatolian farmers responsible for creating and spreading the world's most far-flung language family?". Science. 303 (5662): 1323. doi:10.1126/science.303.5662.1323. PMID 14988549. S2CID 28212584. ^ Cite error: The named reference MET was invoked but never defined (see the help page). ^ Curry, Andrew (August 2019). "The first Europeans weren't who you might think". National Geographic. ^ Krause, Johannes; Jeong, Choongwon; Haak, Wolfgang; Posth, Cosimo; Stockhammer, Philipp W.; Mustafaoğlu, Gökhan; Fairbairn, Andrew; Bianco, Raffaela A.; Julia Gresky (19 March 2019). "Late Pleistocene human genome suggests a local origin for the first farmers of central Anatolia". Nature Communications. 10 (1): 1218. Bibcode:2019NatCo..10.1218F. doi:10.1038/s41467-019-09209-7. ISSN 2041-1723. PMC 6425003. PMID 30890703. ^ "Çatalhöyük added to UNESCO World Heritage List". Global Heritage Fund. 3 July 2012. Archived from the original on 17 January 2013. Retrieved 9 February 2013. ^ Chacon, Richard J.; Mendoza, Rubén G. (2017). Feast, Famine or Fighting?: Multiple Pathways to Social Complexity. Springer. p. 120. ISBN 9783319484020. ^ Jablonka, Peter (2011). "Troy in regional and international context". In Steadman, Sharon; McMahon, Gregory (eds.). The Oxford Handbook of Ancient Anatolia. Oxford University Press. doi:10.1093/oxfordhb/9780195376142.013.0032. ^ Bryce, T. (2005). The Trojans and their Neighbours. Taylor & Francis. ISBN 978-0-415-34959-8. ^ Jablonka, Peter (2012). "Troy". In Cline, Eric (ed.). The Oxford Handbook of the Bronze Age Aegean. 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Ancient Iraq. p. 314. ^ Revelation 3:1–6 ^ Ramage, Andrew (2000). King Croesus' gold: Excavations at Sardis and the history of gold refining. Cambridge, Mass: Archaeological Exploration of Sardis, Harvard University Art Museums, in association with the British Museum Press. ISBN 978-0714108889. ^ "Istanbul". Encyclopædia Britannica. ^ Aristotle, Metaphysics Alpha, 983b18. ^ Public Domain  Smith, William, ed. (1870). "Thales". Dictionary of Greek and Roman Biography and Mythology. p. 1016. ^ Michael Fowler, Early Greek Science: Thales to Plato, University of Virginia [Retrieved 16 June 2016] ^ Frank N. Magill, The Ancient World: Dictionary of World Biography, Volume 1, Routledge, 2003 ISBN 1135457395 ^ Singer, C. (2008). A Short History of Science to the 19th century. Streeter Press. p. 35. ^ Needham, C. W. (1978). Cerebral Logic: Solving the Problem of Mind and Brain. Loose Leaf. p. 75. ISBN 978-0-398-03754-3. ^ Colony and Mother City in Ancient Greece By A. J. 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"A companion to Ancient Macedonia" John Wiley & Sons, 2011. ISBN 1-4443-5163-X pp. 135–138, 343 ^ Herodotus Book 8: Urania, 68 "...which have been fought near Euboea and have displayed deeds not inferior to those of others, speak to him thus:..." ^ passages: 7.99, 8.68–69, 8.87–88, 8.93.2, 8.101–103 ^ Hooker, Richard (6 June 1999). "Ancient Greece: The Persian Wars". Washington State University, Washington, United States. Archived from the original on 3 December 2010. Retrieved 22 December 2006. ^ The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York (October 2000). "Anatolia and the Caucasus (Asia Minor), 1000 B.C. – 1 A.D. in Timeline of Art History.". New York: The Metropolitan Museum of Art. Archived from the original on 14 December 2006. Retrieved 21 December 2006. ^ Cite error: The named reference FreedmanMyers20002 was invoked but never defined (see the help page). ^ Theo van den Hout (2011). The Elements of Hittite. Cambridge University Press. p. 1. ISBN 978-1-139-50178-1. Retrieved 24 March 2013. ^ Strobel, Karl (2013). "Central Anatolia". The Oxford Encyclopedia of the Bible and Archaeology. Oxford University Press. ISBN 978-0-19-984653-5. Retrieved 15 May 2018. ^ Esler, Philip Francis (1998). Galatians. Routledge. p. 29. ISBN 978-0-415-11037-2. Galatai was the Greek word used for the Celts from beyond the Rhine who invaded regions of Macedonia, Greece, Thrace and Asia Minor in the period 280–275 BCE ^ See Diod.5.32-3; Just.26.2. Cf. Liv.38.17; Strabo 13.4.2. ^ The Foreign Policy of Mithridates VI Eupator, King of Pontus, by B. C. McGing, p. 11 ^ Children of Achilles: The Greeks in Asia Minor Since the Days of Troy, by John Freely, p. 69–70 ^ Strabo of Amasia: A Greek Man of Letters in Augustan Rome, by Daniela Dueck, p. 3. ^ a b McGing, Brian (2004). "Pontus". Encyclopaedia Iranica, online edition. Retrieved 14 November 2019. ^ Bosworth, A. B.; Wheatley, P. V. (November 1998). "The origins of the Pontic house". The Journal of Hellenic Studies. 118: 155–164. doi:10.2307/632236. ISSN 2041-4099. JSTOR 632236. S2CID 162855144. ^ "Acts 11:26 and when he found him, he brought him back to Antioch. So for a full year they met together with the church and taught large numbers of people. The disciples were first called Christians at Antioch". Retrieved 14 July 2021. ^ Encyclopaedia Biblica, Vol. I, p. 186 (p. 125 of 612 in online .pdf file). ^ "ANTIOCH -". Retrieved 14 July 2021. ^ Acts 20:34 ^ a b Cross & Livingstone 2005, St Paul. ^ "Hagia Sophia". Encyclopædia Britannica. Retrieved 2 February 2017. ^ Grant, Robert M. (1997). Irenaeus of Lyons. London: Routledge. p. 2. ^ Mark Golden (2011). "Mark Golden on Caroline Vout, Power and Eroticism" (PDF). The Ancient History Bulletin Online Reviews. 1: 64–66. ^ Anthony Birley, Restless Emperor, pp. 164–7 ^ Daniel C. Waugh (2004). "Constantinople/Istanbul". University of Washington, Seattle, Washington. Retrieved 26 December 2006. ^ Maas, Michael (2015). The Cambridge Companion to the Age of Attila. Cambridge University Press. ISBN 978-1-107-02175-4. ^ Laiou & Morisson 2007, pp. 130–131; Pounds 1979, p. 124. ^ a b "Ecumenical Patriarchate of Constantinople". Encyclopædia Britannica. Retrieved 21 February 2023. ^ Black, Jeremy (2005). The Atlas of World History. American Edition, New York: Covent Garden Books. pp. 65, 228. ISBN 9780756618612. This map varies from other maps which are slightly different in scope, especially along the Mediterranean and the Black Sea. ^ Wink, Andre (1990). Al Hind: The Making of the Indo Islamic World, Vol. 1, Early Medieval India and the Expansion of Islam, 7th–11th Centuries. Brill Academic Publishers. p. 21. ISBN 978-90-04-09249-5. ^ "The Seljuk Turks". Archived from the original on 4 March 2016. Retrieved 9 August 2014. ^ Davison, Roderic H. (2013). Essays in Ottoman and Turkish History, 1774–1923: The Impact of the West. University of Texas Press. pp. 3–5. ISBN 978-0-292-75894-0. ^ Katherine Swynford Lambton, Ann; Lewis, Bernard, eds. (1977). The Cambridge history of Islam (Reprint. ed.). Cambridge [u.a.]: Cambridge Univ. Press. p. 233. ISBN 978-0-521-29135-4. ^ Craig S. Davis. "The Middle East For Dummies" ISBN 0-7645-5483-2 p. 66 ^ Thomas Spencer Baynes. "The Encyclopædia Britannica: Latest Edition. A Dictionary of Arts, Sciences and General Literature, Volume 23". Werner, 1902 ^ Emine Fetvacı. "Picturing History at the Ottoman Court" p 18 ^ Cite error: The named reference mfk&gl2 was invoked but never defined (see the help page). ^ John Freely (2009). The Grand Turk: Sultan Mehmet II - Conqueror of Constantinople and Master of an Empire. Abrams Press. p. 180. ISBN 978-1590202487. ^ Isidore Singer and Cyrus Adler (1912). The Jewish Encyclopedia: A descriptive record of the history, religion, literature, and customs of the Jewish people from the earliest times to the present day. Vol. 2. Funk and Wagnalls. p. 460.{{cite book}}: CS1 maint: uses authors parameter (link) ^ Simons, Marlise (22 August 1993). "Center of Ottoman Power". The New York Times. Retrieved 4 June 2009. ^ "Dolmabahce Palace". Retrieved 4 August 2014. ^ Faroqhi, Suraiya (1994). "Crisis and Change, 1590–1699". In İnalcık, Halil; Donald Quataert (eds.). An Economic and Social History of the Ottoman Empire, 1300–1914. Vol. 2. Cambridge University Press. p. 507. ISBN 978-0-521-57456-3. ^ Stanford J. Shaw (1976). History of the Ottoman Empire and Modern Turkey. Vol. 1. Cambridge University Press. p. 213. ISBN 978-0-521-29163-7. Retrieved 15 June 2013. ^ Kirk, George E. (2008). A Short History of the Middle East. Brill Academic Publishers. p. 58. ISBN 978-1-4437-2568-2. ^ Palabiyik, Hamit, Turkish Public Administration: From Tradition to the Modern Age, (Ankara, 2008), 84. ^ Ismail Hakki Goksoy. Ottoman-Aceh Relations According to the Turkish Sources (PDF). Archived from the original (PDF) on 19 January 2008. Retrieved 7 December 2018. ^ Charles A. Truxillo (2012), Jain Publishing Company, "Crusaders in the Far East: The Moro Wars in the Philippines in the Context of the Ibero-Islamic World War". ^ "Ottoman/Turkish Visions of the Nation, 1860–1950". Retrieved 18 February 2015. ^ Niall Ferguson (2 January 2008). "An Ottoman warning for indebted America". Financial Times. Retrieved 5 September 2016. ^ Todorova, Maria (2009). Imagining the Balkans. Oxford University Press. p. 175. ISBN 978-0-19-972838-1. Retrieved 15 June 2013. ^ Mann, Michael (2005). The Dark Side of Democracy: Explaining Ethnic Cleansing. Cambridge University Press. p. 118. ISBN 978-0-521-53854-1. Retrieved 28 February 2013. ^ "Collapse of the Ottoman Empire, 1918–1920". Retrieved 9 August 2014. ^ Isa Blumi (2013). Ottoman Refugees, 1878–1939: Migration in a Post-Imperial World. Bloomsbury Academic. ISBN 978-1-4725-1536-0. ^ a b "Armenian Genocide". Encyclopædia Britannica. Retrieved 4 January 2023. ^ "Fact Sheet: Armenian Genocide". University of Michigan. Archived from the original on 18 August 2010. Retrieved 15 July 2010. ^ Freedman, Jeri (2009). The Armenian genocide (1st ed.). New York: Rosen Pub. Group. ISBN 978-1-4042-1825-3. ^ Totten, Samuel, Paul Robert Bartrop, Steven L. Jacobs (eds.) Dictionary of Genocide. Greenwood Publishing Group, 2008, p. 19. ISBN 0-313-34642-9. ^ Cite error: The named reference Tatz was invoked but never defined (see the help page). ^ "Erdogan: Turkey will 'never accept' genocide charges". Deutsche Welle. Retrieved 7 February 2018. ^ Raziye Akkoç (15 October 2015). "ECHR: Why Turkey won't talk about the Armenian genocide". The Daily Telegraph. Archived from the original on 10 January 2022. Retrieved 28 May 2016. ^ Donald Bloxham (2005). The Great Game of Genocide: Imperialism, Nationalism, And the Destruction of the Ottoman Armenians. Oxford University Press. p. 150. ISBN 978-0-19-927356-0. Retrieved 9 February 2013. ^ Levene, Mark (Winter 1998). "Creating a Modern 'Zone of Genocide': The Impact of Nation- and State-Formation on Eastern Anatolia, 1878–1923". Holocaust and Genocide Studies. 12 (3): 393–433. doi:10.1093/hgs/12.3.393. ^ Ferguson, Niall (2007). The War of the World: Twentieth-Century Conflict and the Descent of the West. Penguin Group. p. 180. ISBN 978-0-14-311239-6. ^ a b "The Treaty of Sèvres, 1920". Harold B. Library, Brigham Young University. ^ a b c Mango, Andrew (2000). Atatürk: The Biography of the Founder of Modern Turkey. Overlook. p. lxxviii. ISBN 978-1-58567-011-6. ^ Heper, Criss, Metin, Nur Bilge (2009). Historical Dictionary of Turkey. Scarecrow Press. ISBN 978-0-8108-6281-4. ^ Axiarlis, Evangelia (2014). Political Islam and the Secular State in Turkey: Democracy, Reform and the Justice and Development Party. I.B. Tauris. p. 11. ^ Clogg, Richard (2002). A Concise History of Greece. Cambridge University Press. p. 101. ISBN 978-0-521-00479-4. Retrieved 9 February 2013. ^ "Turkey holds first election that allows women to vote". OUPblog. 6 February 2012. ^ Gerhard Bowering; Patricia Crone; Wadad Kadi; Devin J. Stewart; Muhammad Qasim Zaman; Mahan Mirza (2012). The Princeton Encyclopedia of Islamic Political Thought. Princeton University Press. p. 49. ISBN 978-1-4008-3855-4. Retrieved 14 August 2013. Following the revolution, Mustafa Kemal became an important figure in the military ranks of the Ottoman Committee of Union and Progress (CUP) as a protégé ... Although the sultanate had already been abolished in November 1922, the republic was founded in October 1923. ... ambitious reform programme aimed at the creation of a modern, secular state and the construction of a new identity for its citizens. ^ League of Nations Treaty Series, vol. 173, pp. 214–241. ^ Hassan, Mona (10 January 2017). Longing for the Lost Caliphate: A Transregional History. Princeton University Press. ISBN 978-1-4008-8371-4. ^ Soner Çağaptay (2002). "Reconfiguring the Turkish nation in the 1930s". Nationalism and Ethnic Politics. Yale University. 8 (2): 67–82. doi:10.1080/13537110208428662. S2CID 143855822. ^ "Growth in United Nations membership (1945–2005)". United Nations. 3 July 2006. Archived from the original on 17 January 2016. Retrieved 30 October 2006. ^ "Members and partners". OECD. Retrieved 9 August 2014. ^ Hale, William Mathew (1994). Turkish Politics and the Military. Routledge. pp. 161, 215, 246. ISBN 978-0-415-02455-6. ^ Arsu, Sebsem (12 April 2012). "Turkish Military Leaders Held for Role in '97 Coup". The New York Times. Retrieved 11 August 2014. ^ Nas, Tevfik F. (1992). Economics and Politics of Turkish Liberalization. Lehigh University Press. p. 12. ISBN 978-0-934223-19-5. ^ Cite error: The named reference TR_EUChrono was invoked but never defined (see the help page). ^ Cite error: The named reference barroso was invoked but never defined (see the help page). ^ "European Parliament votes to suspend Turkey's EU membership bid". Deutsche Welle. 13 March 2019. ^ "Recep Tayyip Erdogan wins Turkish presidential election". BBC News. 10 August 2014. ^ Cunningham, Erin; Sly, Liz; Karatas, Zeynep (16 July 2016). "Turkey rounds up thousands of suspected participants in coup attempt". The Washington Post. Retrieved 17 July 2016. ^ a b "Here's why Turkish opposition parties are contesting the referendum results". Washington Post. 16 April 2017. Archived from the original on 19 April 2017. Retrieved 17 April 2017. ^ "President Erdogan confirms May 14 election date in Türkiye". ^ a b "Anayasanın 101. Maddesi (Cumhurbaşkanı Nitelikleri ve tarafsızlığı)". 11 January 2016. ^ a b "Türkiye Cumhuriyeti Cumhurbaşkanlığı: Görev ve Yetkiler".
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Stay safe
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    Travel Warning  WARNING: Because of the ongoing civil war in Syria, do not travel within 10 km of Turkey's border with that country.
    Government travel advisories
    Stay safe
    Travel Warning  WARNING: Because of the ongoing civil war in Syria, do not travel within 10 km of Turkey's border with that country.
    Government travel advisories
    United Kingdom
    (Information last updated 01 Sep 2020)
    Antalya beach

    Dial 112 to contact the police or the gendarme (a military-styled unit of the Interior Ministry responsible for rural safety) from any phone, free of charge.

    Upon entering some museums, hotels, metro stations, and almost all shopping malls, especially in larger cities, you will notice security checkpoints similar to those found in airports. Don't worry, this is the standard procedure in Turkey and does not imply an immediate danger of attack. These security screenings are also conducted in a much more relaxed way than the airports, so you will not have to remove your belt to avoid the alarm when walking through the metal detector.

    Carry your passport or other means of identification at all times. One may not be requested to show them for a long period, then all of a sudden a minibus is checked by the traffic police (or the military, particularly in Eastern Turkey), or one runs into an officer of the law with time on his hand, and one must show papers. Some government buildings may ask you to temporarily surrender your passport in return for equipment such as headphones for simultaneous translation, etc., and you may find your passport stored in an open box along with the locals ID cards which may be a little disconcerting. Hotels may request you to hand your passport in until you paid the bill, which puts you into an awkward situation. Referring to the police always made them hand the passport back, once the registration procedure was finalized. Showing a personal visiting card, one or two credit cards or knowing the address of a respectable hotel may solve the no-papers situation, but any self-respecting officer will tell you that you are in the wrong, and will be sorry next time. If treated politely however police and military can be quite friendly and even offer rides to the next city (no joke intended).

    If you intend to travel to Eastern or Southeastern Anatolia, stay ahead of the news. Although it offers many beautiful sights, the situation is far from secure due to ethnic strife and protests, sometimes resulting in violence. The region is far from a war zone, but take precaution when visiting this volatile place. The real risk of threat is not very big though, if you stick on major routes and follow common sense rules (such as avoiding demonstrations).

    Crime See also: Istanbul#Scams

    The large cities in Turkey, especially Istanbul, are not immune to petty crime. Although petty crime is not especially directed towards tourists, by no means are they exceptions. Snatching, pickpocketing, and mugging are the most common kinds of petty crime. The early 2000s installation of a camera network which watches the primary streets and squares has reduced the number of snatching and mugging incidents. Just like anywhere else, following common sense is recommended.

    Have your wallet and money in your front pockets instead of the back pockets, backpack or shoulder bag. Don't exhibit your camera or cellphone publicly for too long if it is a new and/or expensive model (they know what to take away, no one will bother to steal a ten-year-old cell phone as it would pay very little). The same goes for your wallet, if it looks swollen. Leave a wide berth and move away from the area quickly if you see two or more people suddenly begin to argue and fight as this may be a trick to attract your attention while another person relieves you of your valuables. Be alert, this often happens very quickly. Watch your belongings in crowded places and on public transport, especially on trams and urban buses.

    Avoid dark and desolate alleys at night. If you know you have to pass one at night, don't have excessive cash on you. Stay away from demonstrating crowds if the demonstration seems to be turning into an unpeaceful one. Also in resort towns, when going to the beach, don't take any valuable equipment along if there will be no one to take care of them while you are swimming. If you notice that your wallet has been stolen it is wise to check the nearest trash cans before reporting the loss to the police. Often the thieves in Turkey will drop the wallet into the trash to avoid being caught in possession of it and thus red-handed. Obviously it is highly likely that your money will no longer be in it, but there is a chance that your credit cards and papers will be.

    Have a read at the scams section of the Istanbul article to have an idea about what kinds of scams you may come across elsewhere in the country as in Istanbul.

    Driving and road safety

    You should drive defensively at all times and take every precaution while driving in Turkey. Drivers in Turkey routinely ignore traffic regulations, including driving through red lights and stop signs, and turning left from the far right lane; these driving practices cause frequent traffic accidents. Drivers who experience car troubles or accidents pull to the side of the road and turn on their emergency lights to warn other drivers, but many drivers place a large rock or a pile of rocks on the road about 10-15 m behind their vehicles instead of turning on emergency lights. You may not use a cell phone while driving. It is strictly prohibited by law.

    Driving rural roads at night, particularly during the summer harvest, be on the watch for unilluminated agricultural machinery which move slowly in the lane, and may not be visible until you are dangerously close.

    Most Turkish drivers do not respect pedestrian crossings, so be careful when crossing a street, as mentioned in the get around/on foot section.


    The Turkish wilderness is home to both venomous and non-venomous snake (yılan) species. The southern and especially southeastern parts (even cities) of the country have large numbers of scorpions (akrep), so exercise caution if/when you are sleeping on open rooftops, which is common in the southeastern region in summer. If you are stung by one, seek urgent medical aid.

    As for wild mammals, the most dangerous ones are wolves, bears and wild boars, but attacks on humans are extremely rare. All of these animals live only in mountainous areas (of almost all regions) and your chance of sighting one is very low (except boars which are not so rare). Wolves and bears are unlikely to attack unless you follow or disturb them (or, particularly, their young) aggressively. However, in the mating season between November and January, boars are known to attack even with the slightest provocation.

    The biggest animal threat comes from stray dogs (or sheepdogs in rural areas). Don’t assume you will come across gangs of aggressive stray dogs next to the gate of Hagia Sophia or the beach club however. They are mostly found in rural areas and the non-central parts of the cities. They are usually discreet and more afraid of you than you are of them. Rabies (kuduz) is endemic in Turkey (and most of the world) [1], so anyone bitten by a dog or other carnivore should seek urgent treatment, despite what you may be told by your hotel or other well meaning strangers.

    Many stray dogs you’ll see in the cities bear plastic ear tags, indicating the dog was cleaned up, vaccinated (against rabies and a number of other diseases), sterilized, and then returned back to the streets as this is the most feasible humane treatment (compare with keeping them in a cage-like environment or putting them to sleep). The process is going on slowly but steadily, so it can be hoped the stray dog problem in Turkey will disappear in natural ways sometime in the future.


    Most of Turkey has hot summers, with extremely hot summers in the southeastern interior, and while no part of Turkey is a desert, be extra careful when going to the south and southeast if you have never been in a hot-summer climate before. Take it easy on the first few days of your vacation. It’s always an excellent idea to put extra sunscreen on and avoid alcohol as you get used to the summer heat. However despite stereotypes, Turkey isn’t hot all year round. There are harsh winters in the central and especially eastern regions of the country and in the mountains, and the northern parts of Turkey (see Marmara and Black Sea regions) have mild, maritime climates with warm but not hot summers.

    Natural disasters

    Much of Turkey is prone to earthquakes.

    Tourism Police

    There are "Tourism Police" sections of the police departments of Ankara, Antalya, Istanbul (in Sultanahmet), and Izmir providing help specifically for tourists, where travellers can report passport loss and theft or any other criminal activity, they may have become victims of. The staff is multilingual and will speak English, German, French, and Arabic.

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Selam Dünya
Thank you
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How are you?
Fine, thank you
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How much is it?
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