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Saturday, January 16, 2010

Doubts for Istanbul Inauguration

By Adelind Osmanlı reporting from Munich, Germany

In more criticism for the organisers of the Istanbul European Capital of Culture 2010 inauguration starting today, the Hürriyet Daily News and Economic Review has published an article titled "Doubts linger as Istanbul becomes European culture capital" (15 January/Işıl Eğrikavuk).

"Organized in seven districts in the city, there will be several theater, dance and music events, including a concert by pop star Tarkan ... as the city celebrates taking on the title of 2010 European Capital of Culture. Beyond the glamor, however, there are lingering questions about the participation of city residents, the government's effectiveness and the cultural projects' sustainability," the article writes.

Querying what the budget - which is according to the report a whopping 800 million Turkish liras - will be spent on, journalist Eğrikavuk quotes architect Ömer Kanıpak, who served on the agency's executive board but later resigned.

"Most of the agency's projects are temporary events that will not last into 2011 ... For example, there are many restoration projects being established with the agency's budget. Instead of quickly putting makeup on the city, they should have set up a restoration institute," he told the Hürriyet Daily News & Economic Review.

The article, describing Tarkan as the "Prince of Pop", also mentions the singer will take the stage in Taksim, where the main square and crossroads will be closed to all vehicle traffic between 4 p.m. and 10:30 p.m. local time.

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