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One on One with Anil Bora Inan


In an Exclusive Interview with AlameenPost, The Consul General of the Republic of Turkey Mr. Anil Bora Inan shares his thoughts about his tenure in Vancouver.

Mr. Anil Bora Inan has served as The Consul General of the Republic of Turkey in Vancouver since September of 2015 and has remarkably established in this short tenure an operational Consulate office in Downtown Vancouver. He had previously served in United States, United Kingdom and Syria. He was tasked to start from scratch in Vancouver.

Settling in Vancouver and finding housing was one of the challenges facing Anil and his staff. When he arrived in 2015, it was not that easy in Vancouver’s hot real estate market to find an office space and relocating from a temporary office and furnishing a brand new office during the most expensive real estate time in Vancouver.  It took him about 6 months to find proper housing for his family. “I was very much disappointed with residential real estate market; when I arrived here it was very difficult mostly because of badly managed and greedy landlords.” He is happy that the current Govt. is taking proper measures.

Among other challenges, finding preschool facilities for his two children was “really difficult.” He also stated that Vancouver’s financial Institutions “are not ready for the consulates and their diplomatic needs and privileges like Toronto and Ottawa.”  Surprisingly Anil was not impressed with the state of our Public funded healthcare. He and his staff would have preferred a better private medical care. 

Despite some initial setbacks Anil has some fond memorable moments, “Canada is a very beautiful Country, British Columbia is very beautiful, and Vancouver is very beautiful. He further says, “However, with everyone that I have been in touch with, they have always been kind, polite, and open to learning and I have very good memories.”  

Canada has been important in his career. In his 21 years of service, In Canada he got his first chance to be the head of mission. He was responsible to start the mission in Vancouver, which he accomplished within 3 months, the fastest for any new Turkish consulate. Among his Achievements here in Vancouver, Anil started the group of Mikta, group consisting of Mexico, Indonesia, Korea, Turkey and Australia as well as OIC countries-  Afghanistan, Pakistan, Indonesia, Malaysia and Turkey here in Vancouver where they meet every 3 months for cultural and educational events.   

Anil has been instrumental in getting the local Turkish community organized and he arranged for a Turkish Imam for the community. He has initiated few cultural programs like, Turkish cultural festival, Turkish Film festival and a Turkish Choir event. 

In his final advice to Turkish Canadians, he states, “Continue to work diligently to promote their own benefits, being disciplined and organized will give them much needed impact and be part of the Canadian community as law abiding citizens. Continue to serve both Turkey and Canada by being a good bridge between these two beautiful Countries.”

Hopefully these good memories will last a lifetime, we bid you all adieu from AlameenPost readers.

Quotes from other topics during our Interview.

“Immigration system in Canada is being abused by the Fethullah Gülen movement.” Anil Bora Inan

Gülen movement is US-based named after Islamic cleric Fethullah Gulen regarded by followers as a spiritual leader and sometimes described as Turkey's second most powerful man. They run over 100 schools all over Turkey and around the world. After the 15th July, 2016 coup attempt by Gülen supporters within the Turkish army and Bureaucracy, the Turkish Justice Ministry had formally demanded that US authorities arrest Gulen on charges of "ordering and commanding the attempted coup". But US authorities insisted that they do not have enough evidence to arrest Gulen or to start the formal process for his extradition.

Turkey's Maarif Foundation has now recovered most schools run by the Gulen Movement which was funded by Turkish donors.  About 1,886 students have recently graduated from the Turkish Maarif Foundation schools which is operating in 33 countries.

On F-35 Stalemate.

July 31st is the Deadline set by US to cancel its order of Russian S-400 missile interceptors.

If Turkey proceeds with the S-400 deal, Turkey will lose its right to buy 100 F-35s and make parts for even more of the high-tech jets. Currently turkey producers about 12 billion dollars of parts for F-35.

“We don’t want to damage our relations with US. We tried to buy the patriots from them. They did not want to sell it. They have to respect our sovereign decision to buy from Russia.” Anil Bora Inan

Q. Could this escalate to break the NATO? “I don’t think so, and we don’t want to make this damage the relations with US.” - Anil Bora Inan.

Q. Does Turkey see it as a bullying diplomacy by US?  Turkey does not want the US to threaten them, we don’t want this to poison our relations, by the way we buy a lot of Boeing aircrafts. Our relations with US is much deeper than that, we would like to settle this with diplomacy.”-Anil Bora Inan.

On the rise of Islamophobia in Europe.

Mesut Özil, a professional soccer player form Turkish background has played for Arsenal since 2013 and was condemned by politicians from across the German political spectrum. He was accused of betraying Germany’s democratic values after his apparent public support for Turkey’s President Recep Tayyip Erdogan.

Q. Why do you think there is a rise of Islamophobia in Europe? “There are always the wrong doings of the politicians. We should not tolerate people mocking faith of other people. Every politician should understand this. They should not resort to this kind of politics. The New Zealand Prime Minister was exemplary after the Christchurch Mosque Shooting. In addition, Muslim nations should not tolerate this kind of politics. Muslim countries have so many shortcomings. They should be more responsible and accountable to their people.” - Anil Bora Inan.

On Morsi

“He was the legitimate leader of Egypt. We pay our respects to him. We are against military coups anywhere in the world. Morsi was treated unfairly.”

On current situation in Sudan, Algeria and Venezuela.

“Again we are against any military intervention. We are not supporting any regimes. There are foreign involvements in the Middle East and in Venezuela. The only thing we can see is humanitarian situation getting worse.” - Anil Bora Inan. And he suggests the people should get engaged in the political system of their country and raise the issues politically.

On Elections in Istanbul – Anil reiterated that poplar votes has increased but coalition votes has decreased overall.

Turkey and Canada sign MoU

On June 8-2019, Turkey and Canada signed a memorandum of understanding to strengthen relations in the fields of trade, industry, services and investment.

Q. Although officials from Canada and Turkey has met since October 2010 to start Free Trade Discussions nothing has materialized until now. What is the progress?

A. We want to invest in our relations with Canada. We have opened 5 offices including embassy and consular services across Canada. Our trades has increase every year in the last 3 years. MoU is a start, our next step will be an agreement to promote and protect bilateral investment in both countries. I am very hopeful our relations in the commercial field will only get better.

Q. What are key areas of investment vis a vis? Canadian companies are interested in mining, for example, there are 12 companies currently investing in Turkey from Canada, we are in constant touch with a Vancouver mining company, Eldorado Gold Corporation, they have a long history of investment in Turkey.  Turkey imports many agricultural products like pulses, wheat, soya beans and coal from Canada.  Turkey is increasing exports in prepared foods, electric appliances, textiles and manufactured goods to Canada.  Turkish students are arriving in Canada in big Numbers. Turkish medical infrastructure is very strong. Turkey airlines currently fly six times a weeks to Toronto and three times a week to Montreal. We are trying to have flights to the west coast.

Finally how is Canada and Turkey relations? “We do not have a major problem with Canada, like China and Saudi Arabia; Canada has been responsive towards listening about Gulen Movement issues, the MoU has been a good progress, On Rohyngya refugee we are the biggest supporters and Canada is on board with Rohyngya. There are more planned high level meetings in coming months.”