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ANKARA: Map distributed to Istanbul schools redraws Turkey borders

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  • ANKARA: Map distributed to Istanbul schools redraws Turkey borders

    Map distributed to Istanbul schools redraws borders of Turkey
    Abbas Güçlü

    ISTANBUL - Milliyet
    Wednesday, September 30, 2009

    A CD prepared by Istanbul's provincial education directorate has
    redrawn the map of Turkey to include parts of northern Iraq.

    The mistake shocked even the directorate itself and placed education
    officials in an awkward situation as it comes just after Education
    Ministry school books got the dates of some national days wrong.

    The ministry on Wednesday ordered that the CDs be taken back from
    schools and parents who had received them, it was reported.

    A CD was distributed to schools as part of the parent education
    project and on it the map of Turkey included the cities of Mosul and
    Kirkuk in northern Iraq as being within Turkey's borders. It also
    shows the island of Cyprus and Armenia as part of Turkey. Parts of
    Georgia and Bulgaria have also been depicted as within Turkey's

    The project was prepared during the tenure of former Istanbul
    education director, Ata Ã-zer, and the discrepancies have shocked
    current director Muammer Yıldız.

    The map mistake compounds the embarrassment from schoolbooks prepared
    by the Education Ministry and distributed free of charge to students
    also have some very glaring errors. The occasion of Victory Day on
    Aug. 30 is omitted and an incorrect date is cited for Children and
    National Sovereignty Day, celebrated on April 23. The day has been
    marked as April 29 in the books.

    `Such a map is unacceptable. It is a big mistake that can create
    unnecessary debate. I am very sad,' said Yıldız, who initiated an
    inquiry into the matter.

    Yıldız said the information was compiled from various sources but
    that no one noticed the discrepancies until after it was sent to all
    Istanbul schools was even more shocking.

    `It can't be used as an excuse that the map escaped the attention of
    our people working on the project. I wish it hadn't happened. But
    someone from among us should have spotted it and warned us,' said

    Istanbul was chosen as the pilot province to rate the effectiveness of
    the project. The aim is to educate parents on various issues, ranging
    from first aid to how to deal with children, prior to the start of the
    school term. It was carried out during the week before schools started
    alongside the `getting used to school' program for children about to
    begin their education. Around 230,000 children began their first year
    of primary school in the province of Istanbul this year.

    The objective was to have an orientation week for all of these
    children and their parents.

    © 2009 Hurriyet Daily News