Middle-east Arab News Opinion | Asharq Al-awsat

The Republic of Turkey | ASHARQ AL-AWSAT English Archive 2005 -2017
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[map id=”countryBriefMapIn” w=”676″ h=”350″ z=”6″ maptype=”TERRAIN” address=”Ankara, Turkey” marker=”yes”]


• 1922: The Treaty of Lausanne settles the boundaries for modern-day Turkey and leads to international recognition of the sovereignty of the Republic of Turkey as the successor state to the Ottoman Empire. Not long after, the Ottoman Sultanate is abolished. • 1923: Turkey is declared a republic by the Grand National Assembly. Kemal Mustapha Atatürk is Turkey’s first president. • 1924–1928: Atatürk seeks to codify his vision for a contemporary Turkish civilization. The Caliphate is abolished, the Latin alphabet replaces the Arabic one, the Fez hat is prohibited, and the Turkish constitution is amended with the clause stating that Islam is the state religion removed. • 1938: President Atatürk dies. • 1950: Turkey holds its first open multi-party elections. Atatürk’s People’s Republican Party cedes power to the Democratic Party after 27 years in power. • 1952: Turkey joins NATO, abandoning Atatürk’s neutralist stance. • 1963: Turkey signs an association agreement with the European Economic Community (EEC), marking the start of closer ties with Europe. • 1984: The Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK) launches an insurrection in the southeast of the country, which lasts 17 years. • 1987: Turkey applies for full EEC membership. • 1996: NecmettinErbakan’s Welfare Party forms the first pro-Islamic government since 1923, but comes under pressure from the secular military and collapses after just a year. • 1999: The PKK insurgency in the southeast is dealt a crippling blow with the incarceration of its leader Abdallah Öcalan. • 2002: The Justice and Development Party (AKP) wins a landslide election victory. They promise that their policies will not compromise Turkey’s secular identity. • 2008: Parliament approves a constitutional amendment to allow women to wear headscarves on university campuses. There are calls for the AKP to be banned, and a petition to the Constitutional Court only narrowly fails. • 2010: An Istanbul court indicts 196 people of plotting to overthrow the AKP government in what is known as the Ergenekon affair. • 2013: Istanbul sees large protest over the proposed demolition of Gezi Park, heavy handed police tactics and the government’s alleged program of forcing Islam on the secular state.



Official Name: Republic of Turkey
Capital: Ankara
President: Abdullah Gül
Prime Minister: Recep Tayyip Erdoğan