62 Facts About Recep Tayyip Erdogan

1. Recep Tayyip Erdogan stated in a 2011 interview that he supported secularism for Egypt, which generated an angry reaction among Islamic movements, especially the Freedom and Justice party—the political wing of the Muslim Brotherhood.

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2. Recep Tayyip Erdogan tightened controls over the internet, signing into law a bill which allows the government to block websites without prior court order on 12 September 2014.

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3. In 2013, Recep Tayyip Erdogan was placed second on the Simon Wiesenthal Center's list of the year's top ten antisemitic personalities, after Erdogan blamed the "interest rate lobby" as organizers of the mass protests against him in cities around the country in June 2013.

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4. Recep Tayyip Erdogan referred to the Turkish novelist and Islamist ideologue, Necip Fazıl Kısakurek, as his muse.

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5. Recep Tayyip Erdogan has served as the de facto leader of Turkey since 2002.

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6. In 2015, Recep Tayyip Erdogan made a statement in which he endorsed the old Ottoman term kulliye to refer to university campuses rather than the standard Turkish word kampus.

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7. Recep Tayyip Erdogan said that the US behavior will force Turkey to look for new friends and allies.

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8. Recep Tayyip Erdogan declared that the United Kingdom is "an ally and a strategic partner, but a real friend.

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9. In February 2018, President Recep Tayyip Erdogan expressed Turkish support of the Republic of Macedonia's position during negotiations over the Macedonia naming dispute saying that Greece's position is wrong.

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10. In June 2017 during a speech, Recep Tayyip Erdogan called the isolation of Qatar as "inhumane and against Islamic values" and that "victimising Qatar through smear campaigns serves no purpose".

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11. In March 2017, Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan stated to the Turks in Europe "Make not three, but five children.

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12. In January 2017, Recep Tayyip Erdogan said that the withdrawal of Turkish troops from Northern Cyprus is "out of the question" and Turkey will be in Cyprus "forever".

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13. In March 2015, Recep Tayyip Erdogan said that Turkey supported the Saudi Arabian-led intervention in Yemen against the Shia Houthis and forces loyal to former President Ali Abdullah Saleh.

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14. In February 2016 Recep Tayyip Erdogan threatened to send the millions of refugees in Turkey to EU member states, saying: "We can open the doors to Greece and Bulgaria anytime and we can put the refugees on buses.

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15. Recep Tayyip Erdogan vowed that the academics would pay the price for "falling into a pit of treachery".

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16. Recep Tayyip Erdogan called for action by institutions and universities, stating, "Everyone who benefits from this state but is an enemy of the state must be punished without further delay.

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17. On 20 July 2016, President Recep Tayyip Erdogan declared the state of emergency, citing the coup d'etat attempt as justification.

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18. On 29 October 2014, Recep Tayyip Erdogan was due to hold a Republic Day reception in the new palace to commemorate the 91st anniversary of the Republic of Turkey and to officially inaugurate the Presidential Palace.

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19. Recep Tayyip Erdogan has received criticism for the construction of a new palace called Ak Saray, which occupies approximately 50 acres of Ataturk Forest Farm (AOC) in Ankara.

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20. Recep Tayyip Erdogan has stated his intention to pursue a more active role as President, such as utilising the President's rarely used cabinet-calling powers.

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21. Recep Tayyip Erdogan took the oath of office on 28 August 2014 and became the 12th president of Turkey.

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22. Recep Tayyip Erdogan made a speech after the announcement and used the 'Erdogan logo' for the first time.

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23. On 1 July 2014, Recep Tayyip Erdogan was named the AKP's presidential candidate in the Turkish presidential election.

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24. In late 2004, Recep Tayyip Erdogan signed a free trade agreement with Syria.

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25. Recep Tayyip Erdogan said "everyone should know" that his comments were directed at "Israeli policies", especially as regards to "Gaza and the settlements.

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26. In February 2013, Recep Tayyip Erdogan called Zionism a "crime against humanity", comparing it to Islamophobia, antisemitism, and fascism.

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27. Recep Tayyip Erdogan strongly condemned the raid, describing it as "state terrorism", and demanded an Israeli apology.

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28. Recep Tayyip Erdogan was interrupted by the moderator while he was responding to Peres, and left the panel, accusing the moderator of giving Peres more time than all the other panelists combined.

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29. Recep Tayyip Erdogan visited Israel on 1 May 2005, a gesture unusual for a leader of a Muslim majority country.

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30. Recep Tayyip Erdogan stated in a 2011 interview that he supported secularism for Egypt, which generated an angry reaction among Islamic movements, especially the Freedom and Justice party—the political wing of the Muslim Brotherhood.

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31. Recep Tayyip Erdogan condemned the Saudi-led intervention in Bahrain and characterized the Saudi movement as "a new Karbala.

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32. Recep Tayyip Erdogan said the ruling was "a disgrace to the justice system", and criticized the Constitutional Court which had invalidated a presidential vote because a boycott by other parties meant there was no quorum.

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33. Recep Tayyip Erdogan decided not to sign a new deal.

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34. Recep Tayyip Erdogan tried to attract more foreign investors to Turkey and lifted many government regulations.

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35. In 2002, Recep Tayyip Erdogan inherited a Turkish economy that was beginning to recover from a recession as a result of reforms implemented by Kemal Dervis.

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36. In 2011, Recep Tayyip Erdogan ordered the tearing-down of the Statue of Humanity, a Turkish-Armenian friendship monument in Kars, which was commissioned in 2006 and represented a metaphor of the rapprochement of the two countries after many years of dispute over the events of 1915.

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37. In December 2008, Recep Tayyip Erdogan criticised the I Apologize campaign by Turkish intellectuals to recognize the Armenian Genocide, saying, "I neither accept nor support this campaign.

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38. Recep Tayyip Erdogan passed a partial amnesty to reduce penalties faced by many members of the Kurdish guerrilla movement PKK who had surrendered to the government.

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39. Recep Tayyip Erdogan said, "We took a courageous step to resolve chronic issues that constitute an obstacle along Turkey's development, progression and empowerment".

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40. Recep Tayyip Erdogan announced on 24 April 2007 that the party had nominated Abdullah Gul as the AKP candidate in the presidential election.

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41. Recep Tayyip Erdogan could not become Prime Minister as he was still banned from politics by the judiciary for his speech in Siirt.

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42. Recep Tayyip Erdogan had appealed for the sentence to be converted to a monetary fine, but it was reduced to 120 days instead.

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43. Recep Tayyip Erdogan was given a ten-month prison sentence of which he served four months, from 24 March 1999 to 27 July 1999.

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44. In December 1997 in Siirt, Recep Tayyip Erdogan recited a poem from a work written by Ziya Gokalp, a pan-Turkish activist of the early 20th century.

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45. Recep Tayyip Erdogan became a prominent speaker at demonstrations held by his party colleagues.

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46. Recep Tayyip Erdogan paid back a major portion of Istanbul Metropolitan Municipality's two billion dollar debt and invested four billion dollars in the city.

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47. Recep Tayyip Erdogan changed the public buses to environmentally friendly ones.

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48. Recep Tayyip Erdogan was pragmatic in office, tackling many chronic problems in Istanbul including water shortage, pollution and traffic chaos.

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49. Recep Tayyip Erdogan was elected to parliament in 1991, but barred from taking his seat.

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50. Recep Tayyip Erdogan became the party's Beyoglu district chair in 1984, and in 1985 he became the chair of the Istanbul city branch.

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51. Recep Tayyip Erdogan is a member of the Community of Iskenderpasa, a Turkish sufistic community of Naqshbandi tariqah.

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52. Recep Tayyip Erdogan married Emine Gulbaran was born on 1955, Siirt and on 4 July 1978.

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53. Recep Tayyip Erdogan spent his early childhood in Rize, where his father was a Captain in the Turkish Coast Guard.

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54. Recep Tayyip Erdogan told the story of his Adjarian forefathers, which migrated after the Russo-Turkish War from Batumi to Rize.

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55. Recep Tayyip Erdogan was born in the Kasımpasa neighborhood in Istanbul, to which his family had moved from Rize Province.

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56. Recep Tayyip Erdogan was re-elected in the 2018 general election and assumed the role of Executive President and became both the head of state and head of government.

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57. In 2016, Turkey under Recep Tayyip Erdogan began a crackdown on freedom of the press; in 2016 and 2017, more journalists have been incarcerated in Turkey than in any other country.

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58. Recep Tayyip Erdogan became Prime Minister in March 2003 after winning a by-election in Siirt.

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59. Recep Tayyip Erdogan abandoned openly Islamist politics and established the moderate conservative AKP in 2001.

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60. Recep Tayyip Erdogan played football for Kasımpasa before being elected in 1994 as the Mayor of Istanbul from the Islamist Welfare Party.

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61. Recep Tayyip Erdogan founded the Justice and Development Party in 2001, leading it to general election victories in 2002, 2007 and 2011 before standing down upon his election as President in 2014.

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62. Recep Tayyip Erdogan previously served as Prime Minister from 2003 to 2014 and as Mayor of Istanbul from 1994 to 1998.

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