Turkey travel guide


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Turkey Travel Guide

Turkey History

Turkish territory along its history has been birthplace of many different cultures and civilizations. Since 6500 B.C. Hattis, Hittites, Phrygians, Urartians, Armenians, Persians, Romans, Seljuks and Ottomans have left important signs of its civilizations through the country, ancient cities, ruins and the cultural heritage that make of Turkey so unique.

The most remarkable civilizations in the Asia Minor where undoubtedly Byzantines and Ottomans. The Byzantine Empire also known as the Eastern Roman Empire with Constantinople as its capital was founded by Constantine the Great in AD 330 and survived to the collapse of the Western Roman Empire; for 1100 years the Byzantines were able to maintain control of their empire until the wars with enemies from the east principally Ottomans. After that Byzantine Empire declined the Ottoman Empire occupied and expanded their territorial control over Turkey and some parts of Europe, Africa and Western Asia, but the Ottomans’ ambitions of territorial control over the Mediterranean and Central Europe also brought many enemies and wars with them, causing the collapse of the Empire that governed the Mediterranean over 623 years.

Ottoman Empire’s collapse culminated with its participation in the World War I allied to Germany in 1914. The alliance was defeated by Allied powers and that brought the instability inside the Ottoman structure. At the end of the War, the Anatolian territory came under British and French control and Istanbul was occupied.

The occupation of Istanbul and Izmir by the Allies led the establishment of the Turkish national movement under the leadership of Mustafa Kemal Pasha known as “Ataturk” or “father of the Turks”, a distinguished military and Hero of the War. The Turkish War of Independence was started with the aim of revoking the terms of the Treaty of Sèvres. In 1922, the occupying armies were repelled and the country saw the birth of the new Turkish state. Consequently the Sultanate and Caliphate were abolished.

In 1923 was signed the Treaty of Lausanne which led the international recognition of the sovereignty of the newly formed "Republic of Turkey" as the successor state of the Ottoman Empire, and the republic was officially proclaimed on October 29, 1923 in the new capital, Ankara, with Kemal Ataturk as its first President.

The new republic concentrated its beginings to make great changes into its social, economical and political structure, following the Western model. Political social and economic reforms were introduced by Ataturk and after his death in 1938, Turkish politics continue to form the ideological base of modern Turkey.

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