Land area: 779,452 sq km
Straddles two continents; 3% in Europe (Thrace), 97% in Asia (Anatolia). It also controls the Bosphorus Strait and the Dardanelles, vital sea links between the Black Sea and the Mediterranean. Its strategic position has made the area of prime importance throughout history.
Population: 80,845,215 Capital: Ankara
Official language: Turkish, Kurdish
Simultaneously one of the poorer nations of Europe yet also the most developed of the Turkic countries in Central and Western Asia. Turkey has acted as a bridge between these two worlds while remaining separate from either. The Kurdish people, who compose nearly one-fifth of the total population within Turkey, are in dispute with the Turks over ethnic recognition. The government often prosecutes Kurd speakers and confiscate publications under the guise of prohibiting separatist propaganda.
A mix of antiquity and innovation, the nation of Turkey combines modern industry with traditional agriculture to be the sixteenth largest economy in the world. In spite of the growth, the economy continues to be hindered by a high deficit and is dependent on unreliable, short-term investments.
Poverty rate: 13.5%