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Politics

Europe Briefing — Global

Preface

Alcohol tax in Turkey, election with Finland and Georgia's diplomacy love-in.

Diplomacy, Election, Finland, Georgia, Ireland, John Godson, Turkey

Green eyes on the Green Isle

Ireland

Ireland may be the sick man of Europe but the new Taoiseach (or prime minister), elected in February, still earns around €230,000 a year – the highest of any OECD countries.

Let them eat grapes

Turkey [ALCOHOL]

Planning on a few cocktails on your next holiday in Turkey? You might need a bank loan to pay for it. The government has increased a special tax on alcohol by 30 per cent, making Turkey one of the most expensive countries in the world to have a drink. It also introduced new regulations limiting alcohol sales…

Turkey’s other culture clashes:

  1. Sex:
    Under pressure from the Board of Education, three academics were fired from Istanbul’s Bilgi University earlier this year after a student turned in a pornographic film for his dissertation. The entire film department was also shut down.

  2. Cosmopolitanism:
    Expats in Turkey are still talking about the bloody attack last September on an art gallery opening in central Istanbul. A mob attacked guests and were reportedly armed.

  3. Headscarves:
    Turkey’s secular establishment continues to battle religious Muslims over the issue. A top court in January ruled that wearing one during a university exam is “unlawful”.

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