• Short Summary

    The political violence in Turkey, which has led to the imposition of martial law, claimed the life on Thursday (February 1) of the editor-in-chief of one of the country's most influential newspapers.

  • Description

    The political violence in Turkey, which has led to the imposition of martial law, claimed the life on Thursday (February 1) of the editor-in-chief of one of the country's most influential newspapers.

    SYNOPSIS: For Prime Minister, Bulent Ecevit, his first year back in office has been overshadowed by similar acts of violence. Over eight hundred died last year, and now most of the country's major cities are under martial law, imposed at the end of December.

    In the South Eastern town of Kahramanmaras, over a hundred people were reported killed in the December riots. Troops were called in to stem further violence. Political parties in Turkey do not agree on the causes of the violence. But Mr Ecevit's Social Democrat government, along with most observers, believe that legitimate political groups have been behind much of the rightist-inspired violence.

    Whatever the causes, the violence has pushed into the background the fact that Turkey is in it's worst-ever economic crisis. The biggest problem is inflation. Last year it rose to forty-two per cent. And prices are still rising at about five per cent a month.

    Sixty per cent of the country's forty-three million people live in rural areas. Agriculture is still the main economic activity, but there has been large-scale and unplanned migration to cities, where average wages are four times higher. Since 1950 the population of the cities has grown five-fold. A December report by the Organisation of Economic Co-Operation and Development says creating more employment and higher incomes through improved agricultural efficiency would be one way of slowing the rural migration. This, in turn, says the report, would make possible more rapid industrialisation in the poorer provinces.

    Over one fifth of Turkey's sixteen million workers are unemployed. Factories are working at half capacity. Last year the country's development rate fell to below four per cent. For fifteen years it had stood at around seven per cent - - one of the highest in the world. But the world recession - - making oil and imported goods more expensive - - severely affected Turkey's balance of payments. In the next few months though, Turkey looks set to receive financial aid from the OECD, with the backing of Western leaders. The December OECD survey says Turkey has a great potential for expansion - - though it will need to be helped out of the current crisis by its trade partners. It seems likely that in exchange for financial emergency-aid, Turkey may be forced to bow to demands for a new austerity programme.

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  • Data

    Film ID:
    VLVA4U3PH7VU7DH0UPFXL7X86P68L
    Media URN:
    VLVA4U3PH7VU7DH0UPFXL7X86P68L
    Group:
    Reuters - Source to be Verified
    Archive:
    Reuters
    Issue Date:
    02/02/1979
    Sound:
    Unknown
    HD Format:
    Available on request
    Stock:
    Colour
    Duration:
    00:02:48:00
    Time in/Out:
    /
    Canister:
    N/A

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