OFFICIAL NAME: Republic of Turkey
SYSTEM OF GOVERNMENT: Multiparty Republic
AREA: 779,452 Sq Km (300,948 Sq Mi)

Direct Link to Political MapDirect Link to Physical MapLOCATION & GEOGRAPHY: Turkey is located on the Anatolian Peninsula in between West Asia and Eastern Thrace. It is bound by the Agean Sea to the west, Bulgaria and the Black Sea to the north, Georgia to the northeast, Armenia and Iran to the east and Iraq, Syria and the Mediterranean Sea to the south. The country is divided into five physical regions. (1.) The Anatolian Plateau which forms the heartland of the country. (2.) The Eastern Highlands which comprise the eastern third of Turkey. (3.) The Agean coast land of the Bursa Plains, the Plains of Troy and Ismit Valley. (4.) The Mediterranean coast land and (5.) the narrow coastal ribbon of the Black Sea. The principal rivers are the Kizil Irma, Sakarya, Seyhan, Yesihrmak Rivers while the Tigris and Euphrates Rivers originate from Turkey. Major Cities (pop. est.); Istanbul 7,331,900, Ankarra 2,720,000, Izmir 1,920,800, Adana 1,010,400, Bursa 949,800 (1993). Land Use; forested 26%, pastures 16%, agricultural-cultivated 36%, other 22% (1993).

CLIMATE: Turkey has a climate that is characterized by great extremes and wide temperature variations between regions and seasons. The narrow coast land and mountain slopes to the north, west and south have wetter and milder winters than the interior as well as moderately hot summers. The interior plateau winters are cold with frost while the summers are hot. Eastern Turkey has bitter cold winters and hot summers. Average annual precipitation in Istanbul is 723 mm (28 inches) while average temperature ranges in Ankara are from -4 to 4 degrees Celsius (25 to 39 degrees Fahrenheit) in January to 15 to 31 degrees Celsius (59 to 88 degrees Fahrenheit) in August.

PEOPLE: The principal ethnic majority are the Turks who account for 85% of the population. The largest ethnic minority are the Kurds who account for 11% of the population and are concentrated in the poor areas of the east and southeast. Other minorities include Greeks, Armenians and Jews.

DEMOGRAPHIC/VITAL STATISTICS: Density; 75 persons per sq km (194 persons per sq mi) (1991). Urban-Rural; 61.3% urban, 38.7% rural (1990). Sex Distribution; 51.3% male, 48.7% female (1990). Life Expectancy at Birth; 62.5 years male, 65.8 years female (1990). Age Breakdown; 35% under 15, 29% 15 to 29, 18% 30 to 44, 11% 45 to 59, 6% 60 to 74, 1% 75 and over (1990). Birth Rate; 29.2 per 1,000 (1990). Death Rate; 8.4 per 1,000 (1990). Increase Rate; 20.6 per 1,000 (1990). Infant Mortality Rate; 76.0 per 1,000 live births (1990).

RELIGIONS: Around 99% of the population are Sunni Muslims while the remainder are Orthodox Christians.

LANGUAGES: The official language is Turkish which is spoken by 92% of the population while other minority languages include Kurdish, Arabic, Greek, German and Armenian.

EDUCATION: Aged 25 or over and having attained: no formal schooling 40.1%, primary 44.4%, secondary 11.6%, higher 3.9% (1985). Literacy; literate population aged 15 or over 23,978,500 or 76.0% (1985).

MODERN HISTORY - WWII TO 1993: In 1947 Turkey signed a defense agreement with the US in an effort to resist Soviet expansion. In 1950 the Democratic Party (DP) won elections and Adnam Menderes became Prime Minister. In 1952 Turkey joined the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) and in 1959 reached an agreement for Cyprus' independence with Greece and Britain. In May 1960 the Army overthrew the government and took power until free elections were held in Oct. 1961, which returned the country to civilian rule. In 1965 the Justice Party (JP) under Suleyman Demirel held government until Mar. 1971 when the military forced him to resign, due to an escalation in extreme right and left-wing violence under his government's rule. In 1974 Turkish forces occupied northern Cyprus. In the late 1970's as economic conditions worsened and political violence escalated, the military led by Gen. Kenan Evren again took control of the government and imposed Martial Law. The military established a National Security Council, with Evren as head, that held power for 3 years. In 1983 the government was returned to civilian rule under Turgut Ozal although Gen. Evren remained President until 1989. In Mar. 1987 Martial Law was formally lifted and in April, Turkey applied for full EC membership. In June 1988 there was an unsuccessful attempt to assassinate Prime Minister Ozal and in Oct. 1989 Ozal was elected to succeed Gen. Evren as President. During the 1990-1991 Gulf War, Turkey was used as a staging base for air attacks on Baghdad, Iraq by the US-led coalition forces. In compliance with UN sanctions against Iraq, Turkey shut down the Iraqi oil pipeline which carries oil to the Mediterranean Sea. In 1991 Turkish Kurds from the Kurdish Workers' Party (PKK) launched several attacks against Turkish security forces from bases along the Iraq-Turkey border throughout the year. In April 1991 the government lifted a ban on the use of Kurdish and in the same month hundreds of thousands of Iraqi Kurds attempted to gain sanctuary in Turkey, although the government denied them access they assisted in relief operations. In June 1991 Mesut Yilmaz of the Motherland Party (ANAP) was elected Prime Minister after Yildirim Akbulut and his ANAP government resigned. On Oct. 22, 1991 parliamentary elections resulted in the ANAP failing to retain its overall majority with the True Path Party, led by Suleyman Demirel, gaining 178 of the 450 seats. Following which Demirel formed a coalition government with the Social Democratic Populist Party (SHP). In Nov. 1991 Turkey officially recognized the former Soviet republic, Azerbaijan's independence. On Dec. 25, 1991 an Istanbul department store was firebombed, killing 11 people. Also in 1991 Turkey received some US $4 billion in financial grants from Kuwait, Saudi Arabia and Japan in lieu of lost revenue as a result of UN imposed economic sanctions against Iraq. On Feb. 11, 1992 Prime Minister Demirel met with US Pres. George Bush in Washington, D.C. to discuss the promotion of regional stability. On June 25, 1992 the Black Sea economic cooperation region summit, an initiative of Pres. Turgut Ozal, that included leaders of Russia, Ukraine, Moldova, Georgia, Armenia, Azerbaijan, Romania, Bulgaria, Albania and Greece met for the first time. During the summit there was an attempt to find a settlement between Armenia and Azerbaijan over Nagorno-Karabakh and calls for the halt in fighting in Bosnia Herzegovina while Prime Minister Demirel and his Greek counterpart, Konstantinos Mitsotakis, agreed that a friendship pact would have to be postponed until a settlement over Cyprus had been reached. In Sept. 1992 the Republican Peoples' Party, the SHP predecessor, was reestablished with Deniz Baykal as its leader. On Sept. 29, 1992 an attack on a border post by Turkish PKK rebels resulted in the death of 23 security force members and some 200 rebels. The government also responded further by launching air and ground offensives against rebel bases, and reached agreements with Syria, Iran and Iraqi Kurd leaders not to allow the PKK terrorists facilities or assistance. In Oct. 1992 forces under the command of Masoud Barzani and Jalal Talabani, Iraqi Kurd leaders, attacked PKK bases in northern Iraq resulting in more than 50% of the PKK rebels being captured or killed by the end of November. On Jan. 24, 1993 a well known newspaper journalist, Ugur Mumcu was assassinated by Islamic fundamentalists. On March 20, 1993 the PKK leader, Abdullah Ocalan, declared a unilateral truce in hostilities. On April 17, 1993 Pres. Ozal died and was succeeded by Prime Minister Demirel with Erdal Inonu as acting Prime Minister. On May 24, 1993 a group of PKK rebels ambushed 33 soldiers and 5 civilians in the southeastern mountains killing them. In response security forces intensified their operations. On June 13, 1993 Tansu Ciller succeeded Demirel as the True Path Party leader and became Turkey's first female Prime Minister. On June 24, 1993 the PKK launched coordinated attacks on Turkish diplomatic offices in Switzerland, France, Germany and Denmark. On July 2, 1993 a group of Sunni Muslims fire bombed a hotel in Sivas in which 36 Shiite intellectuals died. On Sept. 4, 1993 Islamic fundamentalists assassinated a radical parliamentary member and PKK supporter, Mehmet Sincar. On Oct. 22, 1993 PKK snipers assassinated the southeastern regional military commander, Gen. Bahtiyar Aydin in Lice that resulted in massive military retaliation. In Nov. 1993 some 15 PKK members were sentenced to death by a military court while 14 others were sentenced to life imprisonment. In Dec. 1993 the security forces launched further offensives, including air strikes against PKK bases within Iraq.

CURRENCY: The official currency is the Lira (LT) divided into 100 Kurush.

ECONOMY: Gross National Product; USD $126,330,000,000 (1993). Public Debt; USD $52,625,000,000 (1994). Imports; USD $23,270,000,000 (1994). Exports; USD $18,106,000,000 (1994). Tourism Receipts; USD $4,321,000,000 (1994). Balance of Trade; USD -$5,164,000,000 (1994). Economically Active Population; 20,996,700 or 35.3% of total population (1993). Unemployed; 8.4% (1994).

MAIN TRADING PARTNERS: Its main trading partners are Germany, the USA, France, the UK, Italy, Libya, Iran and Eastern Europe.

MAIN PRIMARY PRODUCTS: Barley, Cattle, Chrome, Crude Oil, Coal, Copper, Fish, Fruit, Iron Ore, Lignite, Maize, Pulses, Sheep, Sugar Beets, Tobacco, Vegetables, Wheat.

MAJOR INDUSTRIES: Agriculture, Chemicals, Fishing, Food Processing, Mining, Oil Refining, Paper, Steel, Textiles, Tobacco.

MAIN EXPORTS: Cereals, Cotton, Fruit, Nuts, Pulses, Textiles, Tobacco.

TRANSPORT: Railroads; route length 8,430 km (5,238 mi) (1989), passenger-km 6,408,000,000 (3,982,000,000 passenger-mi) (1990), cargo ton-km 7,908,000,000 (5,416,000,000 short ton-mi) (1990). Roads; length 320,611 km (199,218 mi) (1988). Vehicles; cars 1,649,879 (1990), trucks and buses 584,460 (1990). Merchant Marine; vessels 869 (1990), deadweight tonnage 6,359,902 (1990). Air Transport; passenger-km 4,829,345,000 (3,000,815,000 passenger-mi) (1990), cargo ton-km 152,203,000 (104,244,000 short ton-mi) (1990).

COMMUNICATIONS: Daily Newspapers; total of 31 with a total circulation of 4,054,000 (1991). Radio; receivers 8,800,000 (1994). Television; receivers 10,530,000 (1994). Telephones; lines 12,318,969 (1994).

MILITARY: 507,800 (1995) total active duty personnel with 78.8% army, 10.0% navy and 11.2% air force while military expenditure accounts for 5.8% (1993) of the Gross National Product (GNP).

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