10 Striking Portraits Show Beach Life In Istanbul

Turkey is a land of beaches: The Anatolian Peninsula’s south touches the Mediterranean Sea, the Aegean Sea rests to the west, and the Black Sea borders Turkey’s north. Each region has its own stunning landscape, often accented by jagged cliffsides that meet roaring waves. But the sandy shores of the Black Sea north of Istanbul…

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‘We have been sacrificed by society’

For Berivan Elif Kilic there is no such thing as a typical day. The 34-year-old mayor of Kocakoy, a village of 17,000 inhabitants in southeastern Turkey, has just calculated that in the first 11 months after she took on the role, she spent only 11 full days in the village. “When I’m in town, I…

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Southern Turkish town finds fame in a pizza oven

Kafro’s Pizzeria is a picturesque outdoor restaurant with a canopy of vines above it in the tiny village of Kafro in southeastern Turkey. “We wanted to do something different — everywhere around here makes local dishes and meat really well, so we decided to make pizza,” explains Nail Demir, the restaurant’s chef. Pizza isn’t a local delicacy…

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Reclaiming Syriac heritage: A village in Turkey finds its voice

KAFRO, Turkey — Standing on the roof of a 1,500-year-old church, gazing over the village of Kafro, 54-year-old Saliba Alptekin reflected on the past few decades. As the sun set, it cast a warm light over the ancient deteriorated stone houses covered in vegetation, like the one Alptekin once lived in. Behind the old, crumbling structures stood gargantuan…

Armen Demircian says he's found a home at this recently restored Armenian Church in Diyarbakir, Turkey — though he's not a Christian. Credit: Bradley Secker

One man in Turkey struggles with his long-hidden Armenian identity

As Armenians around the world commemorate the 100th anniversary of what’s widely considered a genocide — though not in Turkey — some in Turkey are exploring their hidden Armenian roots. That includes Armen Demircian, a 54-year-old retired Turkish civil servant, who lives in the city of Diyarbakir. Until he was 25, Demircian had no idea about his Armenian heritage. But after…