Geographic and Governmental Profile of Turkey

Background
Modern Turkey was founded in 1923 from the Anatolian remnants of the defeated Ottoman Empire by national hero Mustafa KEMAL, who was later honored with the title Ataturk or "Father of the Turks." Under his authoritarian leadership, the country adopted wide-ranging social, legal, and political reforms. After a period of one-party rule, an experiment with multi-party politics led to the 1950 election victory of the opposition Democratic Party and the peaceful transfer of power. Since then, Turkish political parties have multiplied, but democracy has been fractured by periods of instability and intermittent military coups (1960, 1971, 1980), which in each case eventually resulted in a return of political power to civilians. In 1997, the military again helped engineer the ouster - popularly dubbed a "post-modern coup" - of the then Islamic-oriented government. Turkey intervened militarily on Cyprus in 1974 to prevent a Greek takeover of the island and has since acted as patron state to the "Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus," which only Turkey recognizes. A separatist insurgency begun in 1984 by the Kurdistan Workers' Party (PKK) - now known as the Kurdistan People's Congress or Kongra-Gel (KGK) - has dominated the Turkish military's attention and claimed more than 30,000 lives. After the capture of the group's leader in 1999, the insurgents largely withdrew from Turkey mainly to northern Iraq. In 2004, KGK announced an end to its ceasefire and attacks attributed to the KGK increased. Turkey joined the UN in 1945 and in 1952 it became a member of NATO. In 1964, Turkey became an associate member of the European Community. Over the past decade, it has undertaken many reforms to strengthen its democracy and economy; it began accession membership talks with the European Union in 2005.
Location
Southeastern Europe and Southwestern Asia (that portion of Turkey west of the Bosporus is geographically part of Europe), bordering the Black Sea, between Bulgaria and Georgia, and bordering the Aegean Sea and the Mediterranean Sea, between Greece and Syria
Geographic coordinates
39 00 N, 35 00 E
Continent / Subcontinent
Middle East
Area
total:
783,562 sq km
rank:
37
land:
769,632 sq km
water:
13,930 sq km
Area - comparative
slightly larger than Texas
Land boundaries
total:
2,648 km
border countries:
Armenia 268 km, Azerbaijan 9 km, Bulgaria 240 km, Georgia 252 km, Greece 206 km, Iran 499 km, Iraq 352 km, Syria 822 km
Coastline
7,200 km
Maritime claims
territorial sea:
6 nm in the Aegean Sea; 12 nm in Black Sea and in Mediterranean Sea
exclusive economic zone:
in Black Sea only: to the maritime boundary agreed upon with the former USSR
Climate
temperate; hot, dry summers with mild, wet winters; harsher in interior
Terrain
high central plateau (Anatolia); narrow coastal plain; several mountain ranges
Elevation extremes
lowest point:
Mediterranean Sea 0 m
highest point:
Mount Ararat 5,166 m
Natural resources
coal, iron ore, copper, chromium, antimony, mercury, gold, barite, borate, celestite (strontium), emery, feldspar, limestone, magnesite, marble, perlite, pumice, pyrites (sulfur), clay, arable land, hydropower
Land use
arable land:
29.81%
permanent crops:
3.39%
other:
66.8% (2005)
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Irrigated land
52,150 sq km (2003)
Total renewable water resources
234 cu km (2003)
Freshwater withdrawal (domestic/industrial/agricultural)
total:
39.78 cu km/yr (15%/11%/74%)
per capita:
544 cu m/yr (2001)
Natural hazards
severe earthquakes, especially in northern Turkey, along an arc extending from the Sea of Marmara to Lake Van
volcanism:
limited volcanic activity; its three historically active volcanoes; Ararat, Nemrut Dagi, and Tendurek Dagi have not erupted since the 19th century or earlier
Environment - current 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
Environment - international agreements
party to:
Air Pollution, Antarctic Treaty, Biodiversity, Climate Change, Desertification, Endangered Species, Hazardous Wastes, Ozone Layer Protection, Ship Pollution, Wetlands
signed, but not ratified:
Environmental Modification
Geography - note
strategic location controlling the Turkish Straits (Bosporus, Sea of Marmara, Dardanelles) that link Black and Aegean Seas; Mount Ararat, the legendary landing place of Noah's ark, is in the far eastern portion of the country
Country name
conventional long form:
Republic of Turkey
conventional short form:
Turkey
local long form:
Turkiye Cumhuriyeti
local short form:
Turkiye
Government type
republican parliamentary democracy
Capital
name:
Ankara
geographic coordinates:
39 56 N, 32 52 E
time difference:
UTC+2 (7 hours ahead of Washington, DC during Standard Time)
daylight saving time:
+1hr, begins last Monday in March; ends last Sunday in October
Administrative divisions
81 provinces (iller, singular - ili); Adana, Adiyaman, Afyonkarahisar, Agri, Aksaray, Amasya, Ankara, Antalya, Ardahan, Artvin, Aydin, Balikesir, Bartin, Batman, Bayburt, Bilecik, Bingol, Bitlis, Bolu, Burdur, Bursa, Canakkale, Cankiri, Corum, Denizli, Diyarbakir, Duzce, Edirne, Elazig, Erzincan, Erzurum, Eskisehir, Gaziantep, Giresun, Gumushane, Hakkari, Hatay, Igdir, Isparta, Istanbul, Izmir (Smyrna), Kahramanmaras, Karabuk, Karaman, Kars, Kastamonu, Kayseri, Kilis, Kirikkale, Kirklareli, Kirsehir, Kocaeli, Konya, Kutahya, Malatya, Manisa, Mardin, Mersin, Mugla, Mus, Nevsehir, Nigde, Ordu, Osmaniye, Rize, Sakarya, Samsun, Sanliurfa, Siirt, Sinop, Sirnak, Sivas, Tekirdag, Tokat, Trabzon (Trebizond), Tunceli, Usak, Van, Yalova, Yozgat, Zonguldak
Independence
29 October 1923 (successor state to the Ottoman Empire)
National holiday
Republic Day, 29 October (1923)
Constitution
7 November 1982; amended several times; note - amendment passed by referendum 21 October 2007 concerning presidential elections
Legal system
civil law system based on various European legal systems notably the Swiss civil code; note - member of the European Court of Human Rights (ECHR), although Turkey claims limited derogations on the ratified European Convention on Human Rights
International law organization participation
has not submitted an ICJ jurisdiction declaration; non-party state to the ICCt
Suffrage
18 years of age; universal
Executive branch
chief of state:
President Abdullah GUL (since 28 August 2007)
head of government:
Prime Minister Recep Tayyip ERDOGAN (since 14 March 2003)
cabinet:
Council of Ministers appointed by the president on the nomination of the prime minister
elections:
president elected directly for a five-year term (eligible for a second term); prime minister appointed by the president from among members of parliament
election results:
on 28 August 2007 the National Assembly elected Abdullah GUL president on the third ballot; National Assembly vote - 339
in October 2007 Turkish voters approved a referendum package of constitutional amendments including a provision for direct presidential elections
Legislative branch
unicameral Grand National Assembly of Turkey or Turkiye Buyuk Millet Meclisi (550 seats; members elected by popular vote to serve four-year terms)
elections:
last held on 12 June 2011 (next to be held by June 2015)
election results:
percent of vote by party - AKP 49.8%, CHP 25.9%, MHP 13%, independents 6.6%, other 4.7%; seats by party - AKP 326, CHP 135, MHP 53, independents 36; note - only parties surpassing the 10% threshold are entitled to parliamentary seats
Judicial branch
Constitutional Court; High Court of Appeals (Yargitay); Council of State (Danistay); Court of Accounts (Sayistay); Military High Court of Appeals; Military High Administrative Court
Political parties and leaders
Democratic Left Party or DSP [Masum TURKER]; Democratic Party or DP [Namik Kemal ZEYBEK]; Equality and Democracy Party or EDP [Ziva HALIS]; Felicity Party or SP [Mustafa KAMALAK] (sometimes translated as Contentment Party); Freedom and Solidarity Party or ODP [Alper TAS]; Grand Unity Party or BBP [Yalcin TOPCU]; Justice and Development Party or AKP [Recep Tayyip ERDOGAN]; Nationalist Movement Party or MHP [Devlet BAHCELI]; Peace and Democracy Party or BDP [Selahattin DEMIRTAS]; People's Voice Party or HSP [Numan KURTULMUS]; Republican People's Party or CHP [Kemal KILICDAROGLU]; Turkey Party or TP [Abdullatif SENER]
the parties listed above are some of the more significant of the 61 parties that Turkey had according to the Ministry of Interior statistics current as of May 2009
Political pressure groups and leaders
Confederation of Businessmen and Industrialists of Turkey or TUSKON [Rizanur MERAL]; Confederation of Public Sector Unions or KESK [Lami OZGEN]; Confederation of Revolutionary Workers Unions or DISK [Tayfun GORGUN]; Independent Industrialists' and Businessmen's Association or MUSIAD [Omer Cihad VARDAN]; Moral Rights Workers Union or Hak-Is [Mahmut ARSLAN]; Turkish Confederation of Employers' Unions or TISK [Tugrul KUDATGOBILIK]; Turkish Confederation of Labor or Turk-Is [Mustafa KUMLU]; Turkish Confederation of Tradesmen and Craftsmen or TESK [Bendevi PALANDOKEN]; Turkish Industrialists' and Businessmen's Association or TUSIAD [Umit BOYNER]; Turkish Union of Chambers of Commerce and Commodity Exchanges or TOBB [M. Rifat HISARCIKLIOGLU]
International organization participation
ADB (nonregional member), Australia Group, BIS, BSEC, CE, CERN (observer), CICA, D-8, EAPC, EBRD, ECO, EU (candidate country), FAO, FATF, G-20, IAEA, IBRD, ICAO, ICC, ICRM, IDA, IDB, IEA, IFAD, IFC, IFRCS, IHO, ILO, IMF, IMO, IMSO, Interpol, IOC, IOM, IPU, ISO, ITSO, ITU, ITUC, MIGA, NATO, NEA, NSG, OAS (observer), OECD, OIC, OPCW, OSCE, Paris Club (associate), PCA, SELEC, UN, UNCTAD, UNESCO, UNHCR, UNIDO, UNIFIL, UNRWA, UNWTO, UPU, WCO, WFTU, WHO, WIPO, WMO, WTO, ZC
Diplomatic representation in the US
chief of mission:
Ambassador Namik TAN
chancery:
2525 Massachusetts Avenue NW, Washington, DC 20008
telephone:
[1] (202) 612-6700
FAX:
[1] (202) 612-6744
consulate(s) general:
Chicago, Houston, Los Angeles, New York
Diplomatic representation from the US
chief of mission:
Ambassador Francis J. RICCIARDONE, Jr.
embassy:
110 Ataturk Boulevard, Kavaklidere, 06100 Ankara
mailing address:
PSC 93, Box 5000, APO AE 09823
telephone:
[90] (312) 455-5555
FAX:
[90] (312) 467-0019
consulate(s) general:
Istanbul
consulate(s):
Adana; note - there is a Consular Agent in Izmir
Flag description
red with a vertical white crescent moon (the closed portion is toward the hoist side) and white five-pointed star centered just outside the crescent opening; the flag colors and designs closely resemble those on the banner of Ottoman Empire, which preceded modern-day Turkey; the crescent moon and star serve as insignia for the Turks, as well as being traditional symbols of Islam; according to legend, the flag represents the reflection of the moon and a star in a pool of blood of Turkish warriors
National symbol(s)
star and crescent
National anthem
name:
"Istiklal Marsi" (Independence March)
lyrics/music:
Mehmet Akif ERSOY/Zeki UNGOR
lyrics adopted 1921, music adopted 1932; the anthem's original music was adopted in 1924; a new composition was agreed upon in 1932
Data source 1: All Above textual data, maps and flags were extracted from The World Factbook which was prepared by the Central Intelligence Agency and made available on the following link: The World Factbook. Lebanese Economy Forum is not sponsered or affiliated, in any way, by the US Central Intelligence Agency
Data source 2: Plots and Charts are constructed using the world bank public data catalog which can be viewed by visiting the following link: World Bank Data Catalog. Lebanese Economy Forum is not sponsored or affiliated, in any way, by the worldbank

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