The conference titled 'Minority Rights in the Centennial of the Republic' was held in Istanbul on November 17-18, 2023.

In the conference, which was organized as a hybrid event and broadcast live in Turkish and English, 25 papers from 11 countries were presented. The rights of individuals belonging to ethnic, religious and linguistic minorities, the problems encountered by minorities in Turkey, and the solutions to these problems were discussed in a comprehensive manner.

You can watch the papers presented at the conference, which attracted great interest, on this page.

NOVEMBER 17-18, 2023
DAY ONE - November 17
Opening Remarks
Rakel Dink, Hrant Dink Foundation

Nikolaus Meyer-Landrut, Ambassador, Head of EU Delegation to Türkiye

Opening Speech

Fernand de Varennes, Former UN Special Rapporteur on Minority Issues
Minority Rights are Human Rights: What This Means at the UN, Council of Europe and EU - and for Minorities.

Panel 1  Conceptual Framework and Protection of Minorities
Chair: Turgut Tarhanlı

Olgun Akbulut, Historical Developments of the Concept of ‘Minority’
Yeşim Bayar, Transnational Actors, Minority Protection Regimes, and the Reshaping of the Post-Ottoman Lands

Panel 2 Minorities and the Treaty of Lausanne
Chair: Ayhan Aktar

Baskın Oran, Lausanne, Minority Rights, Kurds, online presentation
Derya Bayır, Do Kurds Have Rights in Lausanne? online presentation
David Gaunt, The Political Submission of the Syriac Orthodox Church

Panel 3 – Identity and Recognition
Chair: Hülya Adak

Emre Can Dağlıoğlu, The Liminality of the Antiochian Arabic-Speaking Orthodox Identity in the Republican History
Levon Leonidas Ntilsizian, Historical Development of the Armenian Community in Greece through Greek State’s Minority Policy and Practices
Nicholas Al-Jeloo, An Expelled and Unwanted Minority: The Assyrians of Hakkâri, online presentation

Panel 4  Exile, Return, and Dispossession
Chair: Mehmet Polatel

Seda Altuğ, Governing the Cross-Border Region in Syria and Imagining the Turkish Nation in Turkey (1921-1939)
Elif Kevser Özer, I Remember ‘Apelasis’ as It was Yesterday
Pelin Tan, Non-Extractive Practices around the Landscape and Ecology of the Tigris River, online presentation

DAY TWO – November 18
Panel 5 – Cultural Heritage, Memory, and Property
Chair: Ayfer Bartu Candan

Melis Cankara, Snapshots from Smyrna-Urla Peninsula: Reusing the Abandoned Properties of the Greek Orthodox Community
Özge Kurban, Rural Heritage of Armenians through Collective Memory: A Case Study in Hizan, Bitlis
Ümit Kılınç, The (Un)Satisfactory Position of the European Court on the Restitution of Property Belonging to Religious Minorities in Turkey
Miray Çakıroğlu, The Temporality of Non-Muslim Property in Turkey: Post-Disaster Antakya Region and Istanbul

Panel 6 – Identity, Belonging, and Exclusion
Chair: Nesrin Uçarlar

Cem Reyna, The Sense of Belonging of Jews in Turkey: Affects and Encounters
Hülya Delihüseyinoğlu, Governing Armenian Schools Through Ambiguity
Hrag Papazian, From ‘Gâvur’ Armenians to Muslim Armenian ‘Gâvuroğlu’s: Parallel Regimes of Religious and Racial Exclusion in Turkey, online presentation

Panel 7 – Minorities at the Margins
Chair: Samim Akgönül

Pınar Sayan, Elmas Köçkün, Understanding Roma Policy of Turkey
İrfan Çağatay, Laz People in 100th year of the Republic of Turkey
Victoria Arakelova, The Yezidi Issue in Turkey

Panel 8 – Religion, Faith, and Minorities
Chair: Ayşe Kadıoğlu

Christopher Sheklian, Liturgy, Ecclesiology, and Minority Rights
Howard Eissenstat, On ‘Diversity,’ ‘Tolerance,’ and the AK Party: Considering Convergences and Divergences at the Republic’s Centenary
Angelo Francesco Carlucci, The Alevis Struggle for Their Religious Rights in Turkey, online presentation