Mois Gabay writes: In my childhood years, I remember wandering in the streets of Beyoğlu alongside my father. Pera was living its last days. At the end of the street near the French Consulate, lay “Tailor Ragıp.” Mr. Ragıp was famous for making trousers that would fit you perfectly. Tailor Blum had trained him.
A Kurdish poet and musician who was killed in the 1993 Sivas Massacre, Hasret Gültekin's statue was erected in the yard of a cemevi in the eastern province of Dersim, along with a monument commemorating the 33 other intellectuals who died in the attack. The cemevi president said that the '93 massacre was a milestone in Alevi history.
President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan signed a decree on July 10 opening Istanbul's Hagia Sophia as a mosque after Turkey’s Council of State annulled a 1934 government decree that had turned it into a museum. Greece said the Turkish court's ruling was an "open provocation" to the civilized world, while the Russian Orthodox Church said the decision could lead to even greater divisions.
UNESCO said on July 9 that any change in the status of Istanbul's Hagia Sophia museum may have to be reviewed by its World Heritage committee. The statement came a day before Turkey’s Council of State — the highest administrative court in the country — will publish its decision regarding a request to turn the sixth-century structure into a mosque.
A 19-year-old woman in the southern province of Adana sought help from law enforcement to evade a forced marriage and succeeded. State-run Anadolu Agency reported that she contacted the security guards at the venue, who then called the police.
Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew, spiritual leader of the world’s Orthodox Christians, has said that if the Turkish government decides to turn Hagia Sophia into a mosque, this move risks turning Christians against Muslims. Bartholomew's statements come two days before Turkey’s Council of State will give a decision regarding the issue.
Mois Gabay writes: The Beyoğlu brands of our childhood no longer stand at their former venues. But just as the late Vitali Hakko once said, we ought to focus on whatever has remained from them, learn about them so that today’s Beyoğlu becomes meaningful for us.
Turkey's traditional Çubuk pickles saw a surge in both domestic and international demand curing the COVID-19 pandemic when probiotic foods became popular to counteract the illness' gastrointestinal symptoms, a local cooperative said. The Ankara district has already exported more pickles in 2020 than in all of 2019.
Istanbul Mayor Ekrem İmamoğlu on June 25 announced that the municipality purchased a portrait of Ottoman Sultan Mehmet II at a London auction. According to the London-based world-famous Christie's auction house, the municipality's winning bid amounted to £770,000 ($955,000) for the oil painting, which is believed to be the work of Italian painter Gentile Bellini in 1480.
Turkey's Culture and Tourism Ministry will be turning the iconic Galata Tower into a museum. The ministry will also launch a "culture route" that spans from the tower, along Istiklal Avenue and to Taksim Square. Minister Ersoy also said that the construction of the AKM would be completed within a month, ongoing since February 2019.
Turkey's first mass event after the COVID-19 pandemic brought together 50 ambassadors and their families, press and businessmen together in Mediterranean Antalya's Aspendos Theater. The concert was performed by Turkey's seven tenors, accompanied by the Antalya Opera and Ballet's orchestra.
Nazlan Ertan writes: Though they are citizens, Afro-Turks mostly remain among their own. In a country marked by its minorities’ turbulent history and unhealed wounds, the Afro-Turks are little known, mainly because they speak infrequently, hardly ever mingle outside the Aegean region, and little research has been carried out on them.
Istanbul's iconic Hagia Sophia museum should be converted into a common place of worship, wrote Turkey's Armenian Orthodox Patriarch Şahak Maşalyan (Şahak II) in a tweet over the weekend. “I think it is more appropriate that it takes on the disposition of a place of worship for the faithful who are on their knees praying in submission God, rather than curious tourists running from here to there to take photographs,” Maşalyan said.
The National Geographic "Your Shot" platform has shared Turkish photographer Dilek Uyar's photo on its Instagram account. The photograph features a municipality worker disinfecting a subway station in the Turkish capital Ankara.
Turkish comic star Kemal Sunal, who died in 2000, is featured on a special “zero euro” banknote for commemorative purposes. The notes were printed through a special permit issued by the European Central Bank.