Latest News from Turkey

Greens lose at Barca, but are within one win from play-offs

By George Georgakopoulos

Panathinaikos succumbed to unbeaten Barcelona in Spain on Friday, going down 84-62, but Armani Milano’s win in Turkey over Fenerbahce has boosted the Greens’ chances for a top-four finish in the group. They should go through to the quarterfinals with victory over Unicaja Malaga in Athens next week.

Turkey Admits Syria Intervention Recording 'Authentic'

Turkey acknowledged the authenticity of a leaked recording of a top officials' meeting over a possible military operation in Syria.

Turkey's Foreign Ministry representatives nevertheless insisted Friday that the content of the recording was "faked", Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung has reported.

Austria's Baumax Might Withdraw from Bulgaria, Eastern Europe

Austrian "do-it-yourself" chain Baumax is mulling a pullback from Bulgaria and Eastern Europe, Austria's Die Presse newspaper reported.

Earlier, its founder Karl-Heinz Essl announced he was kicking off a sale of his artwork collection in a move aimed at raising funds to save his company.

Pioneering Kosovo Soap Gets Viewers’ Thumbs-Up

Kosovo’s first homemade soap opera, “Stine Dashurie”, does not deal in subtle plot lines.

The main character in “Seasons of Love” - to give it its name in English - moves back from Switzerland to Kosovo.

Alban has a job with the EU rule-of-law mission, EULEX, and is caught in a love triangle involving a co-worker and her best friend.

Turkey Blocks YouTube Day After Court Lifts Ban on Twitter

Turkey has blocked access to YouTube, a day after the ban on Twitter has been revoked, according to international media reports.

The national telecoms authority announced taking an administrative measure against the site in Turkey.

Growing Numbers of Bulgarian Pensioners Visit Greece

Bulgarian pensioners become more frequent visitors to Greek islands for Easter. 

A survey of Bulgaria's Darik national radio among tourist agencies found that this spring Greece and Turkey are more preferred by Bulgarians above middle age. 

Cyprus UN envoy says economic crisis could aid peace deal

Cyprus's economic crisis could hasten a deal to end decades of enmity between the island's estranged Greeks and Turks, its outgoing United Nations envoy said on Thursday.

Reunification talks resumed between the two sides on February 11.

61 Illegal Immigrants Apprehended At Bulgaria's “Green” Border

Sixty-one illegal immigrants were apprehended at Bulgaria's “green” border with Turkey in the last 24 hours, Interior Ministry said. 

They are taken to the primary holding centers and are receiving medical attention. Later they will be processed in accordance with the legal requirements. 

Serbia wants trade ties with both Russia and EU

Serbia wants trade ties with both Russia and EU

BELGRADE -- PKS President Željko Sertić says Serbia has opted for the path to the European Union, but will continue economic cooperation with other countries.

Turkish Court Overrules Twitter Ban

The Ankara administrative court overruled the ban on the social platform Twitter. 

The restriction contradicts the rule of law principles - the court motivated its decision.

The court decision comes a day after the UN urged Turkey to lift the ban on Twitter because the limitation of civil liberties contradicts the international law. 

BNP Paribas to Withdraw from Ukraine

BNP Paribas, France's largest bank by market capitalization, has announced plans to pull back from Ukraine.

Its chief financial executive Lars Machenil however added BNP does not mull leaving other countries to the east of Europe, such as Turkey and Poland, website reports.

Montenegro tops tourism growth list

Montenegro tops tourism growth list

Tourism revenue in Montenegro is expected to grow more than 17 percent from last year. Also in business news: Turkey will begin to renegotiate its Customs Union Agreement with the EU by June.

Montenegro ranked first on the list of 184 countries expected to show tourism growth. [AFP]

Bulgaria Among Leaders In Alerts For Dangerous Goods

Bulgaria is in the Top 5 of EU countries with most alerts for dangerous products, shows data of the Rapid Alert System for non-food dangerous products RAPEX. 

Most alerts came from Hubgary – 12% of all, followed by Germany – 11%, Spain – 11%, Bulgaria – 8% and Great Britain – 6%. 

The complaints from Bulgaria were 191 – mostly for clothes of low quality, shows the RAPEX data. 

Turkey To Re-Negotiate Customs Union With EU

Turkey will bring up the customs union deal for re-negotiation with the European Union by June, Turkey's Economy Minister Nihat Zeybekci said.

“By June, we’re going to re-open for negotiation the Customs Union Agreement, to which no sovereign independent state should agree,” Zeybekci said at a meeting with Turkish businesspeople, quoted by Hurryiet Daily News.