Turkey's top media watchdog has urged caution when reporting suicides, saying "Our attitude towards stories that might negatively effect the mental developments of our society, children and youth will be uncompromising." Following three separate incidents of death by cyanide in ten days, a commission was formed to examine the cases.
Turkish engineer and oceanographer Derya Akkaynak has created an algorithm that removes the visual distortion caused by water from an image. Akkaynak's algorithm may have far-reaching consequences for marine biologists who rely on accurate colors to count and classify species.
Republican Senator, one of the harshest critics of Turkey's incursion into northern Syria, has slammed a video shown by President Erdoğan during a White House meeting, saying that it amounts to "propaganda." “I acknowledge you got a legitimate national security concern about armed elements on your border. But do you want me to get the Kurds to play a video about what your forces have done?” Graham told Erdoğan.
Russian President Vladimir Putin is expected to visit Ankara in the first half of January, İbrahim Kalın, a senior aide to Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan, said. Kalın said Putin and Erdoğan will discuss energy issues including the TurkStream natural gas pipeline.
The head of the parliamentary commission on autism, Kemal Çelik, has said that many families are not aware of autism spectrum disorder, with some even "confusing it with obesity." He also touched upon recent reports of a group of parents booing children with autism, saying that the issue had arisen "due to a lack of awareness" on autism.
A MHP deputy has likened the lawyers of HDP Youth Assembly members to a "pack of dogs," while also calling them "terrorists" during a meeting of the Parliamentary Human Rights Inquiry Commission. The deputy's remarks were slammed by the HDP, with its lawmakers leaving the meeting and urging MHP deputy Metin Sazak to resign.
Republican Senator Jim Risch has said "it's best we don't pass a sanctions bill at this moment," following a meeting between U.S. President Donald Trump and President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan. The senator, who previously introduced legislation that would impose sanctions on Ankara, also said that Erdoğan should not go ahead with the S-400 purchase.
Ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP) Mayor Hayrettin Güngör of the province of Kahramanmaraş was filmed as he told a woman “we made you Muslim” after learning that she was from the province of Trabzon. After reactions mounted, Güngör issued an apology on social media.
HDP mayors from Savur, Derik and Mazıdağı districts of Mardin and Suruç district of Şanlıurfa have been detained as part of ongoing terrorism investigations, provincial prosecutors said. In addition to detentions and arrests, Turkey’s Interior Ministry often appoints trustees to replace elected mayors from the HDP in the country’s southeast.
President Erdoğan has ruled out removing the Russian made S-400 missile defense systems, citing Ankara's strategic relationship with Moscow and Turkey's national interests and sovereign rights. "We can't leave the S-400s completely and lean towards the Patriots in such a case," Erdoğan told journalists on the presidential plane.
The pro-government think tank of SETA is being financed mainly by the family of Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan's son-in-law Berat Albayrak, says the German government. Serhat Albayrak, the brother of Berat Albayrak, is SETA's chairperson. In July of this year, SETA came under fire over publishing a report profiling journalists working for foreign media organizations.
A Diyarbakır-based research center conducted a survey asking the public about the primary problems faced by the country. Results showed that the economy and unemployment were the most important concern, the second being the Kurdish issue. The survey also revealed that the state's appointment of trustees to southeastern municipalities have led voters affiliated with the pro-Kurdish Peoples' Democratic Party (HDP) to stay away from the ballot box.
U.S. actress Mia Farrow has shown solidarity with the prominent Turkish journalist Ahmet Altan, who was re-arrested by a court order on Nov. 13. Farrow shared The New York Times' article “Turkey Detains a Top Journalist Again, Signaling a Continuing Crackdown” on her Twitter account.
Turkish authorities have barred the wife of a former British army officer from leaving Turkey pending the investigation into his death. James Gustaf Edward Le Mesurier had founded the White Helmets volunteers group.
An American ISIS fighter who has been stuck in a no man's land at the border between Turkey and Greece since Nov. 11, has been deported to the United States, the Turkish Interior Minister Süleyman Soylu said on Nov. 15. Soylu said earlier this month that Turkey would start extraditing captured ISIS militants to their home countries.
U.S. President Donald Trump said on Nov. 13 that Turkey's purchase of a Russian missile defense system had created a "very serious challenge" for the U.S. Turkish President Erdoğan said the two countries could only overcome their dispute on the S-400s and F-35s through dialogue.
Istanbul Mayor Ekrem İmamoğlu is paying a two-day visit to London, conducting meetings with officials and investors. The mayor is in talks to borrow in international markets to finance infrastructure projects, especially in the area of transportation.
İstanbul Prosecutor's Office has launched an investigation against Belgian model Marisa Papen, for posing nude in Hagia Sophia Museum, Grand Bazaar and on a Turkish flag at Cappadocia. Papen is known for her nude poses at historical sites around the world. She was previously arrested in Jerusalem and Cairo.
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Soner Çağaptay writes: "Erdoğan knows that if he cannot bring back economic growth to Turkey, he is in big trouble. This is why he chose to come to Washington, notwithstanding the anti-Turkish mood that prevails in the U.S. capital. Erdoğan is aware that the path to Turkey’s economic recovery, his political survival, and Ankara’s security goes through improved ties with the U.S."
Onur İşçi and Samuel J. Hirst write: "Unless someone in Washington publicly provides a vision of a solution for the Syrian crisis different from the Russian-backed one, sanctions against Turkey will be punitive rather than an attempt to draw Turkey to a U.S.-led program."
Politics
Syrian President Bashar al-Assad has said that Turkey is unlikely to repatriate three million Syrian refugees to the northeast of the country and this is a "deceptive humanitarian slogan" raised by Ankara. Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan suggested in September that three million refugees could return to a "safe zone" in northern Syria.
A MHP deputy attended the meeting between U.S. President Donald Trump and Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan in the White House on Nov. 13. Another MHP deputy was also among the delegation, in an unexpected move. Three Republican senators were present in the meeting upon Trump's invitation.
PKK leader Abdullah Öcalan's lawyers have requested to meet their client on İmralı Island, where he has been serving a life sentence for over 20 years. The lawyers have been filing numerous applications to visit Öcalan, but no response have been given to them.
U.S. President Donald Trump has asked Turkish pro-Erdoğan journalist Hilal Kaplan whether she is sure that she's a reporter, following her question regarding Trump's relationship with SDF leader Mazloum Abdi. "You sure you're a reporter? You don't work for Turkey with that question?" Trump asked Kaplan.
A journalist and a documentary filmmaker were detained as they attempted to follow a story regarding the suspicious death of a child, while police also took the child's father into custody. The detention of 11-year-old Rabia Naz's father Şaban Vatan was condemned by numerous social media users.
Russia has announced that it set up a helicopter base at the northeastern Syrian city of Qamishli. The Russian deployment comes less than a month after U.S. forces withdrew from the area.
Since the beginning of October, a lack of a sufficient flu vaccinations in Turkey has resulted in waiting lists at pharmacies. The country's Minister of Health Fahrettin Koca recently announced that 253,000 flu vaccinations had been distributed throughout Turkey, but due to high demand, an additional 500,000 would be distributed in the coming weeks.
The European Court of Human Rights has fined Turkey to pay over 295 million Turkish liras in cases of rights violations in the past 16 years, Justice Ministry said in response to an opposition deputy's parliamentary question.
For the first time in Germany’s history, a politician with Turkish descent has won the mayor’s office in a major city. Belit Onay, a 38-year-old parliamentarian from the Green Party, claimed nearly 53 percent of the votes in a runoff ballot on Nov. 10.
A group of protesters held a demonstration at noon on Nov. 13 at Lafayette Park, across from the White House, to protest Turkish President Erdoğan's visit to the U.S. The last time Erdoğan visited Washington, his bodyguards were caught on video beating demonstrators at Sheridan Circle.
The European Union has criticized Turkey for the rearrest of prominent journalist Ahmet Altan a week after his release. "Media freedom and freedom of expression are key to a functioning democracy," the EU said.
Finding a building to rent in order to set the place up as headquarters turned into a major struggle for former Prime Minister Ahmet Davutoğlu, with over 10 building owners turning him down over concerns of "getting into trouble afterwards."
The district of Beytüşşebap is in the southeastern province of Şırnak, which is the province with the second-highest birthrate in the country, lacks a single obstetrician or gynecologist. Doctors appointed to districts in Şırnak frequently have resigned from their positions.
The United States has urged Turkey to look into the reports of human rights violations and war crimes that took place at the hands of Ankara-backed rebels during Turkey's Operation Peace Spring, while citing the killing of Syrian Kurdish politician Hevrin Khalaf as an example of the incidents. Washington also asked Ankara to investigate the reports of usage of chemical weapons, specifically white phosphorus.
Serhat Language, History and Scholarly Research Education Association (SER-DER) President Mehmet Bulgan has called upon the pro-Kurdish People's Democratic Party (HDP) to make efforts to increase Kurdish language courses in majority-Kurdish cities, underlining that the language is under threat.
Both Erdoğan and Trump have utilized their sons-in-law as "back channels" to foster the relationship between the two countries, especially during critical times, says an article penned by The New York Times. Berat Albayrak and Jared Kushner "have developed an informal, next-generation line of communication" between the two leaders, says the newspaper.
Police have detained a woman for throwing a Molotov cocktail into her husband's business in the Black Sea province of Amasya. The woman cited her husband's abusive behavior as the motive of her attack.
Economics
The latest unemployment figures, pertaining to the month of August, were released on Nov. 15 by the Turkish Statistics Institute (TÜIK) indicating that unemployment increased 2.9 percent from the same month in the previous year, reaching 14 percent.
The price of agricultural products increased by 18 percent over the past year.
Following Trade Minister Ruhsar Pekcan's remarks regarding government support for all areas of exports, a new regulation was published in the Official Gazette, stipulating granting green passports, which ease visa requirements for plenty of countries, to exporters with an annual volume higher than 500,000 dollars.
A labor watchdog has announced that nearly 24,000 workers were killed in work-related accidents in the past 17 years, while slamming the government for its policies regarding workplace security.
Fitch has revised Turkey's outlook from "negative" to "stable" and affirmed its “BB-“ rating. “Turkey has continued to make progress in rebalancing and stabilizing its economy," Fitch analysts said.
Urban Beat
Ayvalık now hosts an international film festival. The Ayvalık Film Festival, organized for the second time this October, differs from ordinary film festivals as it does not have a film competition but emphasizes discussions and workshops bringing together students from 6 universities and 4 cities.
Selda Bağcan, who in recent years has achieved international acclaim and is among Turkey's most beloved and renowned singers, will be performing in concert alongside the Istanbul Symphony Orchestra on Dec. 11 at the city's expansive Bostancı Gösteri Merkezi venue.
The city council of the Karabun district has voiced its opposition a plan devised by the Izmir governorate to launch a tender for the rental of a geothermal field in the area. Reminding that Karaburun is home to around 120,00 olive trees, the council said geothermal energy plants in the nearby provinces of Aydın and Denizli have led to environmental destruction.
Belgian daily newspaper Le Soir published a correction and apology after a translation mistake was made in an earlier interview given by Turkish author Aslı Erdoğan to an Italian newspaper.
Municipalities in the capital Ankara have decorated pavement stones with mathematics, physics and chemistry formulas in a district due to the area being heavily student populated.
Acclaimed Turkish film director Ferzan Özpetek received the Italian Order of Merit, the country’s highest honor in Rome on Monday. Özpetek, born in Istanbul but a longtime resident of Italy, enjoys a large audience in Italy, Turkey, and worldwide.
A parliamentary commission on technology addiction has prepared a report recommending certain methods geared towards combating this addiction, which include preventing parents from giving their children tablets or smartphones while at restaurants and malls, and encouraging that the concept of internet addiction be addressed in the Friday sermons at mosques.