We already brought you part one of our list of 15 things you probably didn’t know about Recep Tayyip Erdogan, and now we’re back with part two! Check out eight more facts about Turkey’s 12th president below. You might be surprised by what you learn!
Number Eight: He Has Made Some Controversial Statements About Women. In 2014, at a women’s group summit in Istanbul, Erdogan stated that women cannot be equal to men because “their nature is different.” He also previously told university students in Turkey that they should not be “picky” when choosing a husband, and he has insisted that all Turkish women have children.
Number Seven: He Tried to Ban Twitter. In March of 2014, Erdogan threatened to “eradicate” Twitter, whatever that means, at a campaign rally. Turkey subsequently banned Twitter from their country, and nobody could access the site for two weeks.
Number Six: He Is a Pisces. Born on February 26, 1954, Erdogan is a Pisces. Pisces people are rumored to be intuitive, selfless, and imaginative.
Number Five: He Was Involved With Islam. Throughout the 1970s and 1980s, Erdogan was active in Islamist circles. It is unclear whether this influences the way he handles politics, but it is quite likely.
Number Four: He Co-Founded the AKP. In August of 2001, Erdogan helped to co-found the Justice and Development Party, or AKP, which has its roots in Islam. This helped Erdogan win his spot as the prime minister of Turkey in 2003.
Number Three: He Has Been Targeted by Anti-Government Demonstrations. In June of 2013, there were anti-government demonstrations in Turkey that went against policies of Erdogan’s that involved his plan to turn a park into a mall. The demonstrations were hoping for political reform, and thousands of people were injured in the demonstrations.
Number Two: He Has Been Accused of Antisemitism. Erdogan wrote a play in 1974 that targeted Judaism as evil, so that led to him being accused of being antisemitic. He also noted a famous antisemitic man as his muse.
Number One: He Has Honorary Citizenship in Three Places. Erdogan has been named an “honorary citizen” in Seoul, South Korea, Tehran, Iran, and Prizren, Kosovo.