Middle East: Turkey

About Turkey

Turkey was created in 1923 from the Turkish remnants of the Ottoman Empire. Soon thereafter the country instituted secular laws to replace traditional religious fiats. In 1945 Turkey joined the UN and in 1952 it became a member of NATO. Turkey occupied the northern portion of Cyprus in 1974 to prevent a Greek takeover of the island; relations between the two countries remain strained. Periodic military offensives against Kurdish separatists have dislocated part of the population in southeast Turkey and have drawn international condemnation.

Vital Statistics
Capitol City: Ankara
Population: 66,493,970 (July 2001 est.)
Percent below poverty: NA%
Language: Turkish (official), Kurdish, Arabic, Armenian, Greek
Date of independence: 29 October 1923 (successor state to
Form of government: republican parliamentary democracy
Title of Leader: President
Natural Resources: antimony, coal, chromium, mercury, copper, borate, sulfur, iron ore, arable land, hydropower
Environmental Issues: water pollution from dumping of chemicals and detergents; air pollution, particularly in urban areas; deforestation; concern for oil spills from increasing Bosporus ship traffic
Agricultural Products: tobacco, cotton, grain, olives, sugar beets, pulse, citrus; livestock
Imports: machinery 28.3%, chemicals 15.2%, semi-finished goods 14.5%, fuels 11%, transport equipment 9.5% (1999)
Exports: apparel 25.6%, foodstuffs 15.4%, textiles 12.3%, metal manufactures 8.6%, transport equipment 8.1% (1998)
Trading Partners: IMPORTS: Germany 13.1%, Italy 7.9%, US 7.2%, Russia 7.0%, France 6.6%, UK 5.0% (2000 est.)
EXPORTS: Germany 18.7%, US 11.4%, UK 7.4%, Italy 6.3%, France 6.0% (2000 est.)


Turkey Headlines


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