‘Die duizenden fanatiekelingen op straat boezemen mij het meeste angst in’

Midden op het Taksimplein heeft zich voor het onafhankelijkheidsmonument een groepje van zo’n vijftig mannen verzameld. Knalrode Turkse vlaggen om de schouders gedrapeerd, armen druk zwaaiend in de lucht. De zon brandt fel aan de strakblauwe hemel, het zweet druipt van hun voorhoofden. Maar de mannen laten zich door een beetje hitte niet uit het veld slaan. Dit is hún dag, hún overwinning, en dat … Continue reading ‘Die duizenden fanatiekelingen op straat boezemen mij het meeste angst in’

Refugees as assets in Turkey’s political arena

When hosting an iftar dinner in the border town of Kilis on July 2, President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan had a big surprise up his sleeve for the nearly three million Syrian refugees living in Turkey. “I want to announce some good news to my brothers and sisters here,” Erdoğan said, speaking to the Syrian refugees at the event. “We are going to help our Syrian … Continue reading Refugees as assets in Turkey’s political arena

Istanbul terror attacks expose Turkey’s misplaced priorities

Tuesday’s terror attack on Istanbul’s Atatürk airport is but the latest incident in a long string of attacks that have rocked Turkey in the past year. The attack, which cost the lives of more than 40 people and left scores more wounded, serves as a stark reminder that Turkey’s “war on terror” is all but a complete failure. In the wake of the attacks, Turkish … Continue reading Istanbul terror attacks expose Turkey’s misplaced priorities

Critics become terrorists in Erdoğan’s Turkey

From activists to academics, and protesters to politicians people in Turkey are left with the choice to accept a straitjacket of political conformism or risk being excluded from the social, cultural and political arenas altogether. Or worse. Photo by Uygar Önder Simsek / MOKU Speaking to a group of lawyers in Ankara on April 5, President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan made the controversial suggestion that Turkey … Continue reading Critics become terrorists in Erdoğan’s Turkey

“De Turkse overheid is veranderd, niet Zaman”

Vorige week werd de Turkse oppositiekrant Zaman brutaal overgenomen door de autoriteiten. Zaman is niet het eerste Turkse medium dat door de overheid wordt ingelijfd. Joris Leverink sprak ter plaatse met journalisten en de voormalige hoofdredacteur van Zaman, een krant die zelf ook niet onbesproken is. “Dit is nu misschien wel het best beveiligde gebouw van het land,” grijnst Mustafa Edib Yilmaz, de welbespraakte buitenlandredacteur van de Turkse … Continue reading “De Turkse overheid is veranderd, niet Zaman”

Anti-Mining Protests in Turkey Book Temporary Victory

Over the past weeks, thousands of people across Turkey have protested against the planned construction of a gold mine in Cerattepe, close to the town of Artvin in the northeast of the country. Protesters fear that the mine will cause irreparable damage to the unique natural environment of the region. The protests in Artvin started peacefully on February 15, but these quickly escalated after a … Continue reading Anti-Mining Protests in Turkey Book Temporary Victory

Turkey descends into civil war as conflict in southeast continues to escalate

The latest footage to come out of Sur, the historical district in Diyarbakir that has been under total lock down by Turkish armed forces for the past sixty days, shows a level of devastation one would sooner expect in Syria. In more ways than one – empty streets lined with debris, bombed-out buildings, tanks and soldiers shooting at invisible assailants – the situation in Turkey’s … Continue reading Turkey descends into civil war as conflict in southeast continues to escalate

Turkije op de rand van nieuwe burgeroorlog

In het zuidoosten van Turkije –de Koerdische regio– vinden steeds meer gewelddadige operaties van het Turkse leger plaats. Joris Leverink, voor MO* ter plaatse, bericht van op partijcongressen en in schuilkelders over de burgeroorlog die nu al slachtoffers maakt, ook al erkent de wereld de toestand nog niet.  Ze zitten al dagen vast in de kelder van een appartementengebouw in Cizre. Kinderen, bejaarden, mannen en vrouwen; vijfentwintig personen in … Continue reading Turkije op de rand van nieuwe burgeroorlog

Democracy is Turkey’s only road to peace

While the curfews in Turkey’s southeastern region continued unabated, the HDP gathered in Ankara to elect its leadership and reaffirm its dedication to finding a peaceful and democratic solution out of the crisis. Defiant, determined and bellicose; three words capture the general atmosphere at the HDP’s party congress this past Sunday in Ankara, where, for the first time since the party’s inauguration in June 2014, … Continue reading Democracy is Turkey’s only road to peace

Istanbul bombing: Turkish PM tries to put blame on Kurds

A suicide bomber blew himself up in central Istanbul. With no-one claiming the attack, the Turkish government eagerly used it for their own propaganda. On Tuesday, January 12 a big explosion took place in the heart of Istanbul’s tourist district of Sultanahmet. The explosion was caused by a suicide bomber who blew himself up next to a group of mainly German tourists, instantly killing ten … Continue reading Istanbul bombing: Turkish PM tries to put blame on Kurds