ANKARA - Radikal
Turkey has been running in the Eurovision song contest mostly with English songs since Sertab Erener's (L) victory with 'Every Way That I Can' in 2003. AA photos
Artists who represent Turkey in the annual Eurovision song contest are free to compose their works in languages other than Turkish, İbrahim Şahin, director of the country’s state-owned broadcasting station TRT, said yesterday in a written statement.
“Artists who represent our institution and our country have been granted the liberty [to pick] the language of their songs since 2003. There are no obstacles for our country being represented in the Eurovision contest with a song [written] in a language other than Turkish in the coming years,” Şahin said.
Şahin’s statement came in response to a question posed in parliament by Sırrı Sakık, an independent deputy backed by the Peace and Democracy Party (BDP).
“Participant countries generally join the contest with languages that contain and reflect their cultures to other countries. Is there any work underway for Turkey to be represented by a Kurdish song and a Kurdish artist in [future] song contests?” Sakık said in his parliament question.
The European Broadcasting Union altered its rules in 1999 to allow for countries to enter the contest with songs in languages other than their native tongues, Şahin said.