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Wednesday, August 4, 2021

Turkey likely Qatar’s next partner for Year of Culture program

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With reporting from Shabina S. Khatri

In a sign of deepening ties with Qatar, Turkey is likely the country’s Year of Culture partner for 2015.

Speaking to Doha News, Turkish embassy representatives said the announcement was made during Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan’s visit to Qatar this week.

Turkey Qatar

Following the model of previous culture years (Qatar-Japan, Qatar-UK, Qatar-Brazil), several events such as exhibitions, film screenings and concerts are expected to be hosted in both countries.

Embassy representatives said that both countries are working together to finalize details on this project, which is a Qatar Museums initiative that aims to build cultural ties between people here and the rest of the world.

The announcement was carried by Arabic newspapers here and media in Turkey. However, a QM spokesperson told Doha News today that no firm decision has been made yet.

A source close to QM’s Office of Strategic Cultural Relations said that Saudi Arabia had also been under serious consideration as next year’s partner.

But over the past several months, Qatar’s ties with its neighbor have been under strain over a Gulf dispute that also involves the UAE and Bahrain. All three countries have recalled their ambassadors from Doha, saying they want Qatar to do more to ensure their internal security.

Meanwhile, Erdogan’s trip to Doha this week signaled his first official visit to an Arab country since the beginning his term.

Turkey ties

The two nations agree politically on several issues, including the crisis in Syria, the war on Gaza and the military ousting of former Egyptian President Muhammad Morsi.

Turkey and Qatar also appear to be enjoying deepening economic ties. A few days before Erdogan’s visit, Turkey’s minister of foreign affairs said that the country “was looking forward to facilitating Qatari investment in the country.”

And earlier this year, Turkey’s ambassador to Doha said Qatar would invest $12 billion in Turkey’s Afsin-Elbistan coal-fired power plant project. Shortly before that, Qatar announced that its Coast Guard Service planned to buy 17 patrol boats from Turkish firm Ares Shipyard for QR200 million ($54.92 million).

During his two-day trip to Doha, Erdogan met with Qatar’s Emir and laid the foundation stone for a new “Turkish Village” here.

The Turkish embassy’s representatives told Doha News that the development would be located near Darb Al Saai, where National Day celebrations take place.

The village will be more of market or souq for Turkish merchandise and crafts, and more details about the project would be revealed in a few weeks.

Also discussed during Erdogan’s visit was the construction of a Turkish cultural center and a Turkish school.

No timeline was set for the center, which will offer Turkish-language courses. But embassy representatives said the school, which is located in Ain Khalid, will be open next September, in time for the 2015-2016 academic year.

One representative said: “Construction is being finished now. The building should be ready in about six months.” The school will cater to Turkish citizens in Doha, as subjects will be taught in Turkish.

Thoughts?

17 COMMENTS

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MIMH
MIMH
6 years ago

I wonder if the cultural exchange will go back into hisory and touch on the Ottoman occupation of Arabia when the Ottoman’s set the Islamic agenda for the world. It was an interesting time when the early Muslims gave way to the Ottoman othordox intereptation of Islam codifying the Koran into the pretty much the modern version used by Muslims worldwide today.

LoveItOrLeaveIt
LoveItOrLeaveIt
6 years ago
Reply to  MIMH

… and you’re pretty much mixed up between Uthman and the Ottomans who are over 7 centuries apart.

MIMH
MIMH
6 years ago

I know who Uthman is as well, he succeeded the prophet as one of the early Caliphs and launched wars of conquest against the Persians, Armenians and parts of what is now Afghanistan. These crusades helped expand the Muslim Empire signifcantly.

Observant One
Observant One
6 years ago
Reply to  MIMH

Your an experienced poster on DN MIMH. Dont take the bait, it is never a constructive, discussion, the other locals on here like Aqtr, Abdhulrachman, and Omasillary (sorry to those people if I have not correctly spelled) offer far more measured , considered and helpful debate and input.

Yacine
Yacine
6 years ago
Reply to  MIMH

What you call occupation was actually a welcome intervention, and hisotry tells us that uniting under the Ottoman banner guaranteed prosperity and strength for Muslims during at least 3 centuries. If we have the chance to re-do it again, we will.

MIMH
MIMH
6 years ago
Reply to  Yacine

Really? I don’t think the mumuks think of it in that way. The Ottomans invaded and conquered Arabia and large chunks of North Africa. Also the various Qatari tribes fought a short war against the Ottomans in the 19th Century and this cemented the Al Thanis’ tribe control over Qatar.
However you are right, the Ottoman Empire did help spread Islam by penalising those of other religions within their empire due to non-muslim taxes and forced conversions of those that served in the Ottoman government.

Michael Fryer
Michael Fryer
6 years ago
Reply to  Yacine

Really? Isn’t Qatar National Day a celebration of how Sheikh Jassim Bin Mohamed Bin Thani united the tribes of Qatar and subsequently led them into victory against the Ottomans at the battle of Alwajbah in 1893.

Are you now saying that Qatar National Day is celebrating something that Qataris now regret?

Yacine
Yacine
6 years ago
Reply to  Michael Fryer

I am not talking about the Ottoman EMpire when it became the sick mane of Europe. I am talking about the powerful empire that reigned over much of Europe and the Arab World in the 15th, 16th and 17th Centuries. During that period Muslims lived in prosperity and peace.

Michael Fryer
Michael Fryer
6 years ago
Reply to  Yacine

I think I understand your point. The Ottomans were a good and unifying force when they were uniting (conquering) much of Europe, but by the time they attempted to conquer the Arabian Peninsula they had become contemptible, which is why the Arabs united and beat them in battle.

So the best thing for Qatar about the Ottomans was the period when they weren’t here?

Oracle
Oracle
6 years ago
Reply to  Michael Fryer

Sorry Michael, but your comment does not seem to be logical.

Ottoman drive towards Christian Europe started after they consolidated their power over the Arabian Peninsula. And we all should know very well from the history that “independence” movements in the region were powered by the British empire (and its allies).

Oracle
Oracle
6 years ago
Reply to  Michael Fryer

Guys, where is your negativity coming from? You seem to be particularly singling out Turkey. Hmmm, I don’t recall such comments towards other nations.

Oracle
Oracle
6 years ago
Reply to  MIMH

Very unfortunate to read comments that are empty on content and full on hatred.

MIMH
MIMH
6 years ago
Reply to  Oracle

No hatred, just facts. History is fascinating the good and the bad. What do you have against the Ottoman Empire and it’s interactions with Arabia? Through conquests and wars of rebellion against ottoman rule you also get cultural exchanges. It’s part of what makes up modern Qatar.

Oracle
Oracle
6 years ago
Reply to  MIMH

Why you bring up this topic? You seem to be a very experienced blogger and I couldn’t find similar comments made during the visits of officials from other nations.

Common, what’s wrong with two nations building stronger ties. Let’s put aside our differences and hatred (whatever you guys have), and be happy. After all, it is the year 2014 🙂

A_qtr
A_qtr
6 years ago

Tough luck Rome and Athens .. Maybe the year after

LoveItOrLeaveIt
LoveItOrLeaveIt
6 years ago
Reply to  A_qtr

Barbaric neo-crusaders are upset.

MIMH
MIMH
6 years ago

I think you mistake Rome and Athens for something that happened over a 1000 years ago at least. (Like the people in this region dreaming of a utopia from 670)

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