Erdogan decries birth rate decline, lambasts Eurovision

Turkey's President Recep Tayyip Erdogan speaks during a joint statement to the media in Baghdad, Iraq, on April 22, 2024. [Ahmad al-Rubaye/Pool via Reuters]

The serious decline in birth rates in Turkey is an "existential threat" and a "disaster" for the country, its president, Recep Tayyip Erdogan, has said.

Last week, Turkey's State Statistical Institute announced that the country's birth rate had decreased for the eighth consecutive year in 2023, dropping to 1.51 children per woman.

The data highlighted that a woman gave approximately 2.38 live births during her reproductive life in 2001, and 1.51 in 2023. The highest total fertility rate was in the southeastern Sanliurfa province with 3.27 children, while the lowest was in the northern Bartin province with 1.13. The mean age of the mothers giving birth rose to 29.2 in 2023, while it was 29 for giving birth to the first child.

The Turkish leader has long called on families to have at least three children.

In a speech following a Cabinet meeting, Erdogan...

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