Assembly declares Turkey a republic and Kemal Ataturk as president. [1]


Adoption of Gregorian calendar. Prohibition of the fez. [1]


Turkey becomes secular: clause retaining Islam as state religion removed from constitution. [1]


November - President Ataturk dies, succeeded by Ismet Inonu. There is mass outpouring of grief at the death of the popular leader. [1] [16]


October - The Nazi-Soviet nonaggression pact of August prompts Turkey to sign a treaty of mutual assistance with Britain and France. [16]


June - Hedging its bets, the government concludes a nonaggression treaty with Nazi Germany on June 18, just four days before the Axis invasion of the Soviet Union. [16]

Despite German pressure, Turkey at no time permits the passage of Axis troops, ships, or aircraft through or over Turkey and its waters, and the Montreux Convention is scrupulously enforced in the straits. [16]


August - Turkey breaks diplomatic relations with Adolf Hitler's government. [16]


February - Neutral for most of World War II, Turkey declares war on Germany and Japan, but does not take part in combat. Joins United Nations. [1] [16]

A proposal is entered by former Prime Minister Bayar, Adnan Menderes, and two additional CHP deputies calling for changes in Turkish law to assure the domestic application of the liberties and rights to which the government had ostensibly subscribed by accepting the principles of the UN Charter. When the proposal is disallowed, its four proponents leave the CHP and resign their seats in the assembly. Despite the rejection of Menderes's proposal, the government relaxes many wartime controls and agrees to the further democratization of the political process. [16]


The USA begins to give military aid to Turkey. By the end of fiscal year 1950, over US $200 million in military aid had been received by Turkey, "along with 1,200 US military advisers." Between 1950 and 1979, a further $5.8 billion in official military aid was forthcoming and thousands of personnel received US training. The CIA also started to be active in aiding Turkey's actions against the Kurds. [14] [16]


A secret paramilitary network called "Operation Gladio" is set up by NATO. It eventually has units in nearly all non-communist European countries including Turkey. It is unclear whether these units were controlled by the national governments or NATO, but from an operational point of view they were controlled by the CIA and other intelligence agencies. The network was not uncovered until 1990. [3] [13] [14] [15]


Republic's first open elections, won by opposition Democratic Party. Bayar is elected president and names Menderes prime minister. [1] [16]

Turkey demonstrates its gratitude for the military aid received from the United States when it sends a brigade of 4,500 troops to serve under the UN command in Korea. [16]

Between 1950 and 1991, the United States provides military assistance valued at US$9.4 billion, of which about US$6.1 billion is in grant form and US$3.3 billion is on a concessional loan basis. [16]


Turkey abandons Ataturk's neutralist policy and joins Nato. The headquarters of NATO's Allied Land Forces Southeastern Europe (LANDSOUTHEAST) is established at Izmir. In addition, operational bases near Adana are developed for NATO purposes. [1] [16]


A military facilities agreement with the United States permits the opening of further NATO installations and the stationing of United States forces in Turkey. [16]


Turkey joins with Britain, Iran, Iraq, and Pakistan in the Baghdad Pact, a multilateral defense agreement that becomes the Central Treaty Organization (CENTO) after the overthrow of the Iraqi monarchy in 1958. Headquarters for CENTO are moved to Ankara when Iraq withdraws from the alliance. [16]


The US government ships arms to Jordan, Lebanon, Iraq, Turkey and Saudi Arabia, as part of an attempt to manufacture a confrontation with Syria which had economic ties with the USSR and had bought some military equipment from them. Turkey also moved about 50,000 troops to the Syrian border. [3]

The government places further restrictions on the press and on public assembly in the run up to the elections in October. [16]


After the revolution in Iraq which overthrew the Hashemite monarchy there, the US Joint Chiefs of Staff draft a plan for a joint US-Turkish invasion of Iraq, called Operation CANNON-BONE. Reportedly only Soviet threats to intervene on Iraq's side force the US government to hold back. [3]

Israel-Turkey relations are established by a visit to Turkey by the Israeli Prime Minister David Ben-Gurion. [6]


When a tour of central Anatolia by CHP leader Inönü in early 1960 becomes the occasion for outbreaks of violence along his route, the Menderes government reacts by suspending all political activity and imposing martial law. [16]

April - Students in Istanbul demonstrating against government policies in defiance of martial law are fired on by police; several are killed. The following week, cadets from the military academy stage a protest march in solidarity with the student movement, thereby bringing an element of the armed forces into confrontation with civilian authorities. [16]

May - Army coup against ruling Democratic Party. Those arrested are charged with abrogating the constitution and instituting a dictatorship. [1] [16]

The coup is accomplished with little violence and is accepted quickly throughout the country. The government is replaced by the Committee of National Unity (CNU), composed of the thirty-eight officers who had organized the coup. The committee acts as supreme authority, appointing a cabinet, initially consisting of five officers and thirteen civilians, to carry out executive functions. The number of civilians in the cabinet, however, is later reduced to three. General Gürsel, who had fought at Gallipoli under Atatürk, temporarily assumes the positions of president, prime minister, and defense minister. At the outset, Gürsel announces that the committee's rule would be of an interim nature and that government will be returned to civilian hands at an early date. [16]

October - The trial of some 600 former government officials and DP functionaries begins on the island of Yassiada in the Bosporus. All but about 100 of those tried are found guilty, and fifteen death sentences are pronounced. Partly in response to public appeals for leniency, the death sentences of former President Bayar and eleven others are commuted to life imprisonment, but Menderes and two former cabinet ministers are hanged. [16]


May - A new constitution is ratified. This constitution, which creates Turkey's so-called Second Republic, contains a number of substantial departures from the 1924 constitution but continues to embody the principles of Kemalism. The new constitution is approved by 60 percent of the electorate. [16]

October - The elections give no party a clear majority, leaving the need for a coalition to be formed. In the end the two leading parties can not agree and an interim government is appointed to serve until the 1965 elections. [16]


During the "Cuban Missile Crisis" the Russian leader Khrushchev offers to withdraw missiles from Cuba if the US withdraws theirs from Turkey. The offer is not accepted. [3]

In a highly provocative gesture as the crisis intensifies, the USA turns over control of the Jupiter nuclear missiles to Turkish command "with ceremonial fanfare". [6]


Association agreement signed with European Economic Community (EEC). [1]


Conflict between the Turkish and Greek communities of Cyprus brings Turkey and Greece close to war. The Greek Cypriots favoured union with Greece whilst the Turkish speaking minority proposed partitioning the island. [16]


Suleyman Demirel becomes prime minister - a position he is to hold seven times. [1] [16]


Again conflict between the Turkish and Greek communities of Cyprus brings Turkey and Greece close to war. [16]

The Turkish government does not permit use of bases in Turkey for United States operations during the Arab-Israeli war. [16]


The AP party wins the elections again and Suleyman Demirel remains prime minister. [16]


The Demirel government's majority in the Grand National Assembly gradually dissipates after the 1969 general election as factions within the circle of its initial supporters regroup in new political constellations. In 1970 three small rightist parties that had usually cooperated with the government merge as the National Salvation Party (Milli Selamet Partisi--MSP), an explicitly Islamic-oriented party that imposes politically compromising demands on Demirel as the price of their continued support. [16]


Some former AP members desert the AP to form the more right-wing Democratic Party. Other, more liberal AP members, dissatisfied with Demirel's concessions to the right, defect from the party and sit as independents. As a result of these shifts, the Demirel government loses its parliamentary majority and, in the eyes of critics, forfeits its right to govern the country. Acts of politically motivated violence and terrorism escalate in frequency and intensity. Unrest is fueled in part by economic distress, perceptions of social inequities, and the slowness of reform, but protest is increasingly directed at Turkey's military and economic ties to the West. [16]

March - The armed forces chiefs, headed by army commander General Faruk Gürler, present a memorandum to President Sunay demanding the installation of a "strong and credible government." The military leaders warn civilian officials that the armed forces will be compelled to take over the administration of the state once again unless a government is found that can curb the violence and implement the economic and social reforms, including land reform, stipulated in the 1961 constitution. Demirel resigns the same day. The incident is referred to as the "coup by memorandum." [16]

The coup is supported by the CIA who, "acting through the MIT (Turkish intelligence service) and the counter-guerrilla, promote right-wing psychological warfare terrorist actions to destabilise the Turkish government and to prepare the way for the military coup." They also assist in the coup itself because, according to former US diplomat Robert Fresco, the government had simply become incapable of containing the growing anti-US radicalism in Turkey. [9] [14] [15]


The elections give no overall majority to any party. No lasting coalition is formed. [16]

As in 1967 the Turkish government does not permit use of bases in Turkey for United States operations during the Arab-Israeli war. [16]


July - President of Cyprus, Archbishop Makarios III, demands withdrawal of Greek army officers assigned to the National Guard on the well-founded charge that they are using their position to subvert his government. In reaction, Athens engineers an anti-Makarios coup, which is carried out successfully by conspirators planning union with Greece. In Ankara, Prime Minister Ecevit condemns the coup as constituting a direct threat to Cyprus's Turkish minority. [16]

Some 30,000 Turkish troops, supported by air and naval units, are dropped or landed on Cyprus in the Kyrenia area and advance toward Nicosia, the Cypriot capital. A UN ceasefire comes into effect on July 22nd. [16]

August - Talks at Geneva break down and Turkish troops on Cyprus advance, taking control of all territory north of a line running from Lefka in the west to Famagusta in the east. [16]


February - Turkish Federated State of Cyprus is established in the northern region with Denktas as president. [16]

The United States Congress imposes an arms embargo on Turkey on the grounds that United States-supplied military equipment had been used illegally during the Cyprus operation. The executive branch of the US government opposes this embargo. [16]

March - Five right of center parties form a minority coalition government under Demirel's premiership. [16]


Earthquake kills more than 5,000 people in western Van province. [1]


The CHP wins the elections but not by sufficient margin to form a single party government. It fails to form a coalition. At length opposition leader Demirel puts together another right of center government, but it soon proves unworkable. Also groups indentified with one of the coalition partners, the MHP, are among the principal instigators of the mounting political violence. On the last day of 1977, the Demirel government is defeated on a vote of confidence in which a dozen AP deputies side with the CHP opposition. The party leaders having ruled out a "grand coalition," President Korutürk turns to Ecevit to lead a new government, which is backed by a four-seat parliamentary majority. [16]

The economy is in crisis inflation has reached about 50% and unemployment is officially estimated to be about 30%. [16]


US arms embargo resulting from invasion of Cyprus lifted. [1] [16]

The Ecevit administration is crisis-ridden from the start. The prime minister's attempt to combine regard for civil liberties with tougher law-and-order measures satisfied no one, least of all the military and the police. In December 1978, the government is forced to proclaim martial law in thirteen provinces in reaction to a serious outbreak of sectarian violence. [16]

IMF restructuring plans and austerities have a further detrimental effect on the economy. [16]

The Kurdistan Workers' Party (Partiya Karkeran Kurdistan--PKK), an armed Kurdish guerrilla organization, is founded by Abdullah Öcalan. [16]


April - The calm imposed by martial law is only temporary, and the government extends legal restrictions. [16]

October - Ecevit resigns after the CHP loses ground to the AP in by-elections, and advises President Korutürk to summon Demirel to replace him. Demirel rejects Ecevit's subsequent proposal for a "grand coalition" and chooses instead to put together a technocratic government whose members are selected for their competence rather than their political affiliation. Subsidies to state enterprises are reduced as part of a plan for restructuring, but attempts to rationalize the workforce and control labor costs are challenged by the trade unions in a series of strikes. Demirel counters by extending martial law still further, imposing severe curbs on union activity, and restricting public assembly. Meanwhile, military leaders make no secret of their uneasiness at the growing influence that religious sectarianism is having on politics in obvious defiance of the constitution. [16]


April - President Korutürk's seven-year term in office expires. After 100 ballots, the joint session of the Grand National Assembly fail to agree on a successor. Korutürk retires on schedule, and the chairman of the Senate, Ihsan Sabri Çaglayangil, is installed as acting president of the republic. Çaglayangil can do little more than provide the signature necessary for the enactment of legislation. [16]

September - On September 5, Ecevit aligns the CHP with Erbakan and his NSP to force the resignation of Demirel's foreign minister, Hayrettin Erkman, whose strongly pro-Western views have won him the approval of General Staff officers. The next day, the NSP sponsors a massive rally at Konya, where Islamists (also seen as fundamentalists) demonstrate to demand the reinstatement of Islamic law in Turkey, reportedly showing disrespect for the flag and the national anthem. These acts are regarded as an open renunciation of Kemalism and a direct challenge to the military. [16]

In the early morning hours of September 12, the armed forces seize control of the country. There is no organized resistance to the coup; indeed, many Turks welcome it as the only alternative to anarchy. A five-member executive body, the National Security Council (NSC), is appointed. Composed of the service chiefs and the gendarmerie commander, it is headed by General Evren, who is recognized as head of state. On September 21, the NSC installs a predominantly civilian cabinet and names Bülent Ulusu, a recently retired admiral, prime minister. A 160-member Consultative Assembly subsequently is appointed to draft a constitution for what would become Turkey's Third Republic. [16]

As in 1971 the coup is supported by the CIA. "According to the ... journalist (Mehmet Ali Birand, the) US Secretary of State ... phoned (the US) President ... on the day of the coup to tell him: 'Your boys have done it. Those who were to intervene, have intervened.' One of the 'boys' was General Sahinkaya, Chief of the Air Force and one of the five members of the (junta's) National Security Council (NSC). He had a series of high-level meetings in Washington in the week preceding the military intervention." [9] [10] [14]

Martial law is extended to all the provinces. Suspected militants of all political persuasions as well as trade union and student activists are arrested, and party leaders are taken into custody along with a large number of deputies. Demirel and Ecevit are soon released but told to keep a low profile. When Ecevit begins to publish political articles, he is rearrested and jailed for several months. The Grand National Assembly is dissolved and its members barred from politics for periods of up to ten years. Political parties are abolished and their assets liquidated by the state. The trade unions are purged and strikes banned. Workers who were striking at the time of the coup are given substantial pay raises and ordered back to their jobs. [16]

In 1997 Human Rights Watch reports that the use of torture increased after this coup and became widespread. [11]

US military assistance this year amounts to US$250 million, and economic aid to about US$200 million. [16]

Turkey's international reputation suffers as a result of charges of political repression, arbitrary arrest, imprisonment without trial, torture, and other human rights violations. West European governments appeal to the military regime to restore parliamentary rule, and a portion of the OECD's relief package for Turkey is withheld. The European Community also suspends financial assistance, and Turkish delegates are denied their seats in the assembly of the Council of Europe. [16]

The United States, unlike European countries, does not, now or at other times, persistently and publicly criticize Turkey over allegations human rights violations. [16]

The performance of the Turkish economy improves significantly in the first two years after the military intervention. [16]


New constitution creates seven-year presidency, and reduces parliament to single house. [1] [16]


March - A new law on political parties is issued, which includes a ten-year ban on all politicians active in the pre-September 1980 period. Parties are invited to form so as to contest parliamentary elections later in the year but are required to receive approval from the military rulers. Of fifteen parties requesting certification, only three receive approval: the Motherland Party (Anavatan Partisi--ANAP), the Populist Party (Halkçi Partisi--HP), and the Nationalist Democracy Party (Milliyetçi Demokrasi Partisi--MDP), the latter being the clear favorite of the military. [16]

A detachment of NATO's Airborne Early Warning Force is installed at the Konya Air Base in southwestern Turkey. [16]

November - General election won by Turgut Ozal's Motherland Party (ANAP). [1]


Turkey recognises "Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus." [1]

March - Kurdistan Workers' Party (PKK) launches separatist guerrilla war in southeast. [1] [16]

The 1997 Human Rights Watch report on Turkey's use of torture also notes the the PKK's human rights abuses in its fight with Turkey. [11]


The assembly repeals the provisional article of the constitution that would have banned some politicians from political activity until 1991. [16]

The EC restores economic aid and permits Turkey to reoccupy its seats in European deliberative councils. [16]

November - Elections see the ANAP retain a majority in the assembly, but only because of amended election laws. [16]


March - Greece and Turkey nearly come to blows over oil-drilling rights in the Aegean Sea. [16]

Turkey applies for full EEC membership. [1]

Turkey bombs Iraqi Kurdish villages that Ankara claims are bases for PKK guerrillas. [16]


October - parliament elected Özal Turkey's eighth president. [16]


August - The Turkish government moves quickly to support UN sanctions against Iraq, on August 7 stopping the flow of oil through the pipeline from Iraq to Turkey's Mediterranean coast. [16]

September - The assembly votes to allow foreign troops onto Turkish soil and to authorize Turkish troops to serve in the Persian Gulf. [16]

Turkey allows US-led coalition against Iraq to launch air strikes from Turkish bases. In addition, Turkish troops are deployed along the Turkish-Iraqi border, although Ankara insists that it does not intend to open a second front against Iraq and that it remains committed to Iraq's territorial integrity. [1] [16]

In the aftermath of the Persian Gulf War, Iraqi Kurds attempt to throw off the rule of Saddam Husayn in northern Iraq, following encouragement by United States officials. The uprising, which fails to receive support from the allied coalition, is quickly crushed, leading a massive number of Iraqi Kurdish civilians to seek safety in Iran and Turkey. The Turkish government is unable or unwilling to permit several hundred thousand refugees to enter the country. The coalition allies, together with Turkey, propose the creation of a "security zone" in northern Iraq. By mid-May 1991, some 200,000 Kurdish refugees have been persuaded to return to Iraq. [16]


United States use of Turkish military installations during the bombing of Iraq leads to antiwar demonstrations in several cities, and sporadic attacks on United States facilities continues in 1992 and 1993. [16]

The US raises military aid to US$500 million this year. [16]

Starting this year PKK guerrillas from camps in Syria, Iran, and Iraq, as well as from inside Turkey itself, attack Turkish military and police outposts and target civilian community leaders and teachers. [16]

April - Law 2932, passed in 1983 (declaring the mother tongue of Turkish citizens to be Turkish), is repealed, thereby legalizing Kurdish speech, song, and music. [16]

October - Parliamentary elections see power pass from the Motherland Party to its major rival, the True Path Party. [16]


20,000 Turkish troops enter Kurdish safe havens in Iraq in anti-PKK operation. [1]

Turkey joins Black Sea alliance. [1]

October - Iraqi Kurds and the Turkish army carry out a joint offensive against PKK bases in Iraqi Kurdistan, forcing the surrender of more than 1,000 PKK fighters. [16]


April - President Özal dies suddenly of a heart attack. [16]

May - Tansu Ciller becomes Turkey's first woman prime minister, and Demirel elected president. [1] [16]

Ceasefire with PKK breaks down. [1]

The PKK target villages known to be sympathetic to the government, murdering state officials, teachers, government collaborators, and paramilitary village guards. In an especially cruel incident in May that ends a two-month cease-fire announced by the PKK, a PKK unit executes thirty unarmed military recruits after ambushing several buses. [16]

US Congress approves US$450 million military aid, but shifts the financing from grants to loans. [16]


Increased numbers of security forces are mobilized against the Kurds in a government campaign of mounting intensity. One government strategy is forced evacuation and in a number of instances burning some 850 Kurdish villages to prevent them from harboring PKK insurgents. Although militarily successful, the evacuations cause great hardship to the villagers. [16]

As the Turkish government steps up its actions against the Kurds, the UK steps up its arms exports to Turkey; £68 million worth in 1994 and peaking at £107 million in 1996. In the next four years the Turkish government destroys 3,500 Kurdish villages, makes at least 1.5 million people homeless and internally displaces and kills untold thousands. [4]

Human Rights Watch reports on the state control of women's virginity in Turkey, including the use of virginity examinations. [12]

The United States Congress holds back 10 percent of the funds appropriated for Turkey until the Department of State can verify improvement of Turkey's human rights record and progress on confidence-building measures in Cyprus. Turkey considers this interference in its internal affairs and makes no effort to have the funds restored. Despite this reduction, US$405 million in low-interest loans are approved. [16]


Major military offensive launched against the Kurds in northern Iraq, involving some 35,000 Turkish troops. [1]

The US and UK allow this operation in the "no fly zone". [2]

Ciller coalition collapses. Pro-Islamist Welfare Party wins elections but lacks support to form government - two major centre-right parties form anti-Islamist coalition. [1]

Turkey enters EU customs union. [1]


Centre-right coalition falls. Welfare Party leader Necmettin Erbakan heads first pro-Islamic government since 1923. [1]


Coalition resigns after campaign led by the military, replaced by a new coalition led by the centre-right Motherland Party of Prime Minister Mesut Yilmaz. [1]

The USA hugely increases its military aid to Turkey. Turkey soon becomes the third largest recipient of US arms, after Israel and Egypt. [6]

April - The UN High Commissioner for Refugess witnesses oppressed Kurds crossing the border from Turkey into Iraq to seek sanctuary. One refugee, Ahmet Vurgun, states: ‘We are not saying Saddam is totally respectful of human rights, but he is the one who is supporting us. Saddam is better than the UN and he is much better than Turkey.’ [17]

May - Turkey mounts another operation against the Kurds in Northern Iraq. As before this operation within the "no fly zone" is permitted by the US and UK, this time with 50,000 troops. [2]


January - Welfare Party - the largest in parliament - banned. Yilmaz resigns amid corruption allegations, replaced by Bulent Ecevit. [1]

Turkey mounts another operation against the Kurds in Northern Iraq. As before this operation within the "no fly zone" is permitted by the US and UK, this time with 10,000 troops. [2]


The PKK renounces its armed struggle. [4]

February - PKK leader Abdullah Ocalan captured in Kenya. [1]

The UK closes down the Kurdish TV station MED-TV alleging it encourages violence and is financed by the PKK. [4] [5]

July - Ocalan receives death sentence, later commuted to life imprisonment. [1]

August - Devastating earthquake with epicentre at Izmit in Turkey's heavily populated northwest kills 17,000 people. [1]

November - Second quake in same region kills hundreds more. [1]


Ahmet Necdet Sezer takes over from Suleyman Demirel as president. [1]

Turkey mounts further attacks on the Kurds in Northern Iraq. They bomb villages. When these attacks occur US and UK pilots patrolling the region are ordered to return to base, thus allowing the attacks to proceed unhindered. [2]


UK arms exports to Turkey reach £179 million this year. Some military and police officers are also trained in the UK. All this despite Turkey's ongoing human rights abuses as noted by Human Rights Watch, Amnesty International and others. [4]

The European Court of Human Rights notes that security forces are responsible for house destruction, torture, 'disappearance' and extra- judicial execution in the South East of the country. [4]

January - Diplomatic row with France after French National Assembly recognises the killings of Armenians under the Ottoman Empire as genocide. [1]

March - RAF pilots patrolling the "no fly zone" in Northern Iraq, complain that they are being ordered to return to their bases in Turkey when the Turkish air force wants to bomb the Kurds in Iraq. The Turkish air force bombs the villages of the very people that the RAF is supposed to be protecting. [2]

May - European Court of Human Rights finds Turkey guilty of violating the rights of Greek Cypriots during its occupation of northern Cyprus. [1]

June - Constitutional Court bans opposition pro-Islamic Virtue Party, saying it had become focus of anti-secular activities. New pro-Islamist party Saadet is set up by former Virtue Party members in July. [1]

November - British construction firm Balfour Beatty and Impregilo of Italy pull out of the controversial Ilisu dam project. Swiss bank UBS follows suit in February 2002. [1]


January - Turkish men are no longer regarded in law as head of the family. The move gives women full legal equality with men, 66 years after women's rights were put on the statute books. [1]

March - Turkish and Greek governments agree to build a gas pipeline along which Turkey will supply Greece with gas. [1]

July - Pressure for early elections as eight ministers including Foreign Minister Cem resign over ailing PM Ecevit's refusal to step down amid growing economic, political turmoil. Cem launches new party committed to social democracy, EU membership. [1]

August - Parliament approves reforms aimed at securing EU membership. Death sentence to be abolished except in times of war and bans on Kurdish education, broadcasting to be lifted. [1]

November - Islamist-based Justice and Development Party (AK) wins landslide election victory. Party promises to stick to secular principles of constitution. Deputy leader Abdullah Gul appointed premier. [1]

December - Constitutional changes allow head of ruling AK, Recep Tayyip Erdogan, to run for parliament, and so to become prime minister. He had been barred from public office because of previous criminal conviction. [1]


March - AK leader Recep Tayyip Erdogan wins seat in parliament. Within days Abdullah Gul resigns as prime minister and Erdogan takes over. [1]

Despite heavy financial inducements ($15bn in aid and loans) and political pressure from the USA, parliament decides not to allow deployment of US forces ahead of war in Iraq, but does allow US use of Turkish air space. It authorises dispatch of Turkish forces into Kurdish areas of northern Iraq. Washington strongly criticises the Turkish government for being swayed by the wishes of the vast majority (95%) of the Turkish people. [1] [6] [8]

Now that the Turkish government has defied Washington's demands the West starts to speak of Turkish atrocities agains the Kurds, but not that that the US and UK supported them in this. [6]

May - More than 160 people, many of them schoolchildren trapped in a dormitory, die in an earthquake in the Bingol area. [1]

June-July - Eyeing future EU membership, parliament passes laws easing restrictions on freedom of speech, Kurdish language rights, and on reducing political role of military. [1]

November - 25 people are killed and more than 200 injured when two car bombs explode near Istanbul's main synagogue. Days later two co-ordinated suicide bombings at the British consulate and a British bank in the city kill 28 people. [1]


January - Turkey signs protocol banning death penalty in all circumstances, a move welcomed in EU circles. [1]

February - More than 60 people killed when apartment block in city of Konya collapses. [1]

March - At least two people killed in a suspected suicide attack on a building housing a Masonic lodge in Istanbul. [1]

May - PKK says it plans to end a ceasefire because of what it calls annihilation operations against its forces. [1]

June - State TV broadcasts first Kurdish-language programme. [1]

Four Kurdish activists, including former MP Leyla Zana, freed from jail. [1]

Nato heads of state gather for summit in Istanbul. [1]

July - Three die in car bomb attack in southeastern town of Van. Authorities accuse the PKK of involvement which it denies. [1]

September - Parliament approves penal reforms introducing tougher measures to prevent torture and violence against women. Controversial proposal on criminalising adultery dropped. [1]

December - EU leaders agree to open talks in 2005 on Turkey's EU accession. The decision, made at a summit in Brussels, follows a deal over an EU demand that Turkey recognise Cyprus as an EU member. [1]


January - New lira currency introduced as six zeroes are stripped from old lira, ending an era in which banknotes were denominated in millions. [1]

May - Parliament approves amendments to new penal code after complaints that the previous version restricted media freedom. The EU welcomes the move but says the code still fails to meet all its concerns on human rights. [1]

June - Parliament overturns veto by secularist President Sezer on government-backed amendment easing restrictions on teaching of Koran. [1]

July - Six killed in bomb attack on a train in the east. Officials blame the PKK. [1]

Explosion on minibus in resort town of Kusadasi kills at least four people. [1]

October - EU membership negotiations officially launched after intense bargaining. [1]

November - Multi-billion-dollar Blue Stream pipeline carrying Russian gas under the Black Sea to Turkey opens in the port of Samsun. [1]


March - 14 suspected Kurdish rebels killed by security forces. [1]

April - At least a dozen people are killed in clashes between Kurdish protesters and security forces in the south-east. Several people are killed in related unrest in Istanbul. [1]

May - Islamist gunman opens fire in Turkey's highest court, killing a prominent judge and wounding four others. [1]

July - Baku-Tbilisi-Ceyhan oil pipeline opened at ceremony in Turkey. [1]

August-September - Bombers target resorts and Istanbul. Shadowy separatist group Kurdistan Freedom Falcons (TAC) claims responsibility for some attacks and warns it will turn "Turkey into hell". [1]

30 September - Kurdish separatist group, the PKK, declares a unilateral ceasefire in operations against the military. [1]

October - The French government makes it illegal to deny that the Armenians suffered genocide at the hands of Turkey in 1915. [7]