A Kyrgyz in a Mongol warrior princess getup won the Turkvision song contest in the third iteration of the event that brings together Turkic peoples from across Eurasia in a musical celebration of a shared culture.
But this year’s contest, held in Istanbul on Saturday, was held without Tatars, Yakuts, Tuvans, or Bashkirs, as Moscow forbade Russia’s Turkic peoples from taking part in the contest amid the country’s ongoing row with Ankara. Russian-Turkish relations remain caught in a downward spiral since Turkish military jets shot down a Russian fighter in late November.
There was little information released about the Russian ban; the conference organizers and Turksoy, the Ankara-based Turkic cultural organization under whose auspices Turkvision operates, did not respond to EurasiaNet’s requests for comment.
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Joshua Kucera is a Washington, DC-based freelance writer who specializes in Central Asia, the Caucasus and the Middle East. He is the editor of EurasiaNet's Bug Pit blog.