Janissary chases Santa Claus out of town in symbolical anti-New Year's Eve celebration act
BOLUAmid increasing anger at official and popular levels at the supposed Christian aspects of New Year’s celebrations in Turkey, members of the far-right Great Unity Party (BBP) symbolically ran Santa out of town Dec. 31 in the northwestern province of Bolu.
In a skit performed on the city’s central İzzet Baysal Avenue, Santa began distributing gifts to passersby, prompting the "sultan" – who happened to chance upon the scene – to ask his vizier what was occurring. After being informed, the sultan shouted, "Throw him out of the city," precipitating a chase as Santa attempted to elude pursuing Janissaries.
"Citizens are celebrating because they’re entering a new year," said BBP Bolu Chair Mahmut Alan. "We’re against the celebration of [new year]. We wanted to express this with a play."