Prying Glances / El Turco

From 1860 until the end of World War I, there were various waves of immigration from the Ottoman Empire to Latin America.

Of this wave of migration from the region of the Levant, bordering the Mediterranean to the west and Mesopotamia to the east, and encompassing Turkey, Syria, Lebanon, Israel, Jordan, Palestine and Egypt; It was attended by Christian Arabs, Jews and Armenians.

However, World War II forced even more people to emigrate to Latin America.

Many immigrants who left for the United States in the hope of seeing the Statue of Liberty were met in Rio by a statue of Christ the Redeemer.

Immigrants who came to the American continent in search of a better future were called “Los Turcos”, “El Turco”, which means “Turks”, as they were subjects of the Ottoman Empire.

Although some Arabs, Jews, and Armenians object to being called “Los Turcos”, the term is still fairly common among Hispanics.

During the same period, diplomatic and consular relations began between the Ottoman Empire and some Latin American countries.

Written records show that there were about 30 million “Turcos” living in Latin America, mostly Arabs who arrived in the region in the 19th century on Ottoman passports.

Today, the descendants of El Turcos, who have achieved success in many fields, from politics to business, from art to literature, occupy the social and political position that many people today desire.

The presidents of three Latin American countries are of Ottoman origin.

The descendants of El Turcos hold curatorial positions in politics, bureaucracy, as well as in the world of business and trade in the region in question.

Ottoman immigrants had a say in the politics of Argentina, Brazil, El Salvador, the Dominican Republic, Ecuador, Paraguay, and Brazil.

Current examples include Salvadoran President Naiba Bukele, Paraguayan President Mario Abdo Benítez, and Dominican Republic President Luis Abinader.

In addition, Lebanese-born Michel Temer, who served as President of Brazil in 2016-2018, the 41st President of Ecuador, Lebanese-born Jamil Maouad, and Argentinean President Carlos Menem of Syrian origin in 1989-1999. prominent politicians whose families immigrated from the Ottoman Empire,

The famous “El Turki”

In addition to trade and politics, many Latin Americans of Ottoman origin have gained worldwide recognition, having achieved significant achievements in various fields: cultural, scientific, sports, social and artistic.

Colombian singer Shakira, winner of 16 Grammy awards, and Salma Hayek, actress, director and producer, are at the forefront of these examples.

Other notable Arab Latin Americans include Carlos Slim, the eighth richest man in the world according to Forbes, as well as Brazilian writers Raduan Nassar and Milton Hatum, and Argentine actor Ricardo Darin.

On the other hand, almost all Latin American countries have cultural or social organizations run by communities of immigrant Ottoman subjects.

The most attractive example of these organizations is the 103-year-old Palestino professional football team from the Palestinian-Chilean community in Chile, with nearly half a million Palestinian ancestors.

Source link

Leave a Comment