DIYARBAKIR, TURKEY – A musical association based in the southeastern province of Diyarbakır has applied to state-run TRT television to participate in the 2014 Eurovision song contest with a Kurdish song.
The Diyarbakır Culture, Tourism and Music Association (DİKTUM) applied with a Kurdish song to TRT’s general directorate to represent Turkey at the 2014 Eurovision song contest, which will take place in the Danish capital of Copenhagen.
Kenan Aksu, the head of DİKTUM, said Turkey was a country with language, religious and cultural diversity, of which Kurdish was also a part.
“Diyarbakır is a capital of culture, civilization and music. We will prepare a very good song for the contest. We are ready for it. I believe that we will represent Turkey well and the reactions will be positive,” said Aksu, adding that participating with a Kurdish song at Eurovision would also contribute to the Kurdish peace process. TRT director İbrahim Şahin had said in April 2012 that artists who represent Turkey in the Eurovision were free to compose their works in languages other than Turkish.
Nevertheless, it is still not certain whether Turkey will attend the 2014 Eurovision contest. Turkey refused to attend Eurovision 2013 on the grounds that the voting system was unjust. The European Broadcasting Union, which organizes the contest, announced on Sept. 23 that the voting system had been changed, only a week after Şahin said Turkey would once again refuse to participate if the voting system was not altered.
TRT announced the establishment of a Eurasian version of the contest, which it called “Turkvision,” on Sept. 21. A total of 20 countries and autonomic regions populated with Turkic minorities, such as the Republic of Tataristan, in Russia and the Republic of Crimea, in Ukraine, will participate in the new annual event.