Turkiye: Capital district bans signs in foreign languages

The municipal council of Keçiören, a district in the capital Ankara, has unanimously approved a proposal to ban the use of signs written in foreign languages.

A statement released by the municipality on May 3 highlighted the unanimous decision to prohibit the use of foreign language signs and to mandate the use of only Turkish language signboards.

Keçiören Mayor Mesut Özarslan expressed the municipality’s commitment to promoting the use of the Turkish language, except for corporate brands as mandated by law.

“We advocate for the use of signs written in Turkish within our district with a sense of sensitivity to this matter. We will not tolerate the use of foreign language boards. To prevent misunderstandings, I want to clarify that we are referring to all foreign language signage, regardless of the language,” Özarslan said, averting any possible misinterpretation of discrimination against Arabic.

“We will address this issue and strictly enforce the ban.”

With Türkiye experiencing a surge in immigration over the past decade, many businesses, particularly those catering to refugees from various countries,have begun using signboards in foreign languages, notably Arabic.

Following the local elections on March 31, a large number of mayors have expressed their views on foreign language boards. Newly elected Beyoğlu Mayor İnan Güney emphasized the need for inclusive decision-making on this matter as his district hosts Istanbul’s bustling İstiklal Avenue known for its high tourist traffic and consequently numerous foreign language signs.

Source: hurriyetdailynews

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