Ankara, Turkey – Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu has sent a letter to the United Nations formally requesting that his country be referred to as “Türkiye,” the state-run news Anadolu agency reported. The move is seen as part of a push by Ankara to rebrand the country and dissociate its name from the bird, turkey, and some negative connotations that are associated with it.
Anadolu Agency said Stephane Dujarric, spokesman to U.N. Secretary General Antonio Guterres, confirmed receipt of the letter late on Wednesday. The agency quoted Dujarric as saying that the name change had become effective “from the moment” the letter was received.
Turkish government has been pressing for the internationally recognized name Turkey to be changed to “Türkiye” (tur-key-YAY) as it is spelled and pronounced in Turkish. The country called itself “Türkiye” in 1923 after its declaration of independence.
In December 2021, President Erdogan ordered the use of “Türkiye” to better represent Turkish culture and values, including demanding that “Made in Türkiye” be used instead of “Made in Turkey” on exported products. Turkish ministries began using “Türkiye” in official documents.
Earlier this year in 2022, the government also released a promotional video as part of its attempts to change its name in English. The video shows tourists from across the world saying “Hello Türkiye” at famous destinations.
The Turkish presidency’s Directorate of Communications said it launched the campaign “to promote more effectively the use of ‘Türkiye’ as the country’s national and international name on international platforms.” Turks prefer their country to be called “Türkiye,” in “keeping with the country’s aims of determining how others should identify it.