Inspector Hyder lit a cigarette, he knew it was illegal to smoke in private property other than one’s own, but he smoked anyway. It was one of those idiosyncratic rules that the President had applied to the Nation.
16.1 | Turkey
‘A classic’ Alan Bennett says, ‘is a book that everyone is assumed to have read and often thinks they have’. Ahmet Hamdi Tanpınar’s A Mind at Peace, a long, stream-of-consciousness narrative about the upper middle classes languishing by the shores of the Bosphorus, getting entangled in futile love affairs, contributing a sense of unease rather than progressive zeal to the early republican Zeitgeist, has long been seen as such a classic.
On Saturday 7 June 2014, two Kurdish youths were killed in a clash with Turkish police during protests in the town of Lice in the Kurdish region of Turkey. The Turkish government had planned to build new military outposts there, which was seen as a threat to the Turkish-Kurdish peace process. In the following days, further clashes erupted in many more places around Turkey. On that same weekend, I was in the midst of a solo tour through Eastern Turkey. This is the story of my Monday 9 June in Doğubayazıt.
Turkey’s relations with the European Union (EU) have a long history. Almost from the establishment of the EU, Turkey has been interacting with the EU on several levels and to different degrees.
The two men with the most power in Turkey are President Recep Tayyib Erdoǧan, and religious leader Fethullah Gűlen. The former is the founder and long-time former leader of the Justice and Development Party (AKP) and former Prime Minister. The latter, a Sufi theologian known reverentially as Hocaefendi (respected teacher) to his millions of followers, inspired a civil society humanitarian movement, called Hizmet, or service, which has founded thousands of educational centres and owns dozens of media institutions, in Turkey and abroad.
‘So, you are Pakistani?’ Almost every day, when I meet Turks for the first time, I am asked ‘where are you from?’ Almost without fail, the conclusion is reached before I can say anything. Even though I was born in Britain, and have spent less than ten months of my entire life in Pakistan, I agree for simplicity’s sake.