Turkey Says No to Alcohol, Yes to Yogurt!

No Alcohol, Just Yogurt

Turkey’s parliament has passed an anti-alcohol bill designed to restrict the consumption and advertising of alcohol.

The controversial measure, passed on Friday, bans the sale of alcoholic drinks between 10pm and 6am and bans producers from sponsoring events.

Also included in the law:

  • Alcohol sales will be prohibited within 100 metres of mosques and schools
  • Images of alcoholic drinks will have to be blurred on television – something that is already done for cigarettes
  • Venues where alcohol is sold and consumed can no longer openly display drinks.
  • There will be stricter penalties for drink-driving, with drunken drivers with a blood alcohol level above 0.1% facing up to two years’ imprisonment
  • All liquor bottles will have to display warning signs about the harm of alcohol

The banning of alcohol advertising and the increased restrictions on consumption has angered secularists (and alcoholics) who say the law tries to impose an Islamic agenda on a secular, though predominantly Muslim, country. They also argue that the legislation intrudes into private life.

But the Islamist-rooted ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP) doesn’t really care. They say the law will protect society, particularly young people, from the harmful effects of alcohol.

President Abdullah Gul must still sign the law before it can come into effect, but given that he’s part of the AKP, he’s expected to do so quite soon.

Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan (seen below chugging a pint of yogurt), is also fully onboard. Erdogan, who does not drink or smoke, has a solution for drinkers: switch to yogurt! Erdogan is encouraging youths to drink ayran, the Erdogan proclaimed “national drink” of the Turks.

Erdogan Loves Ayran

“For a healthy generation, my grandfather suggested me ayran as the national drink,” Erdogan said in a speech.

“Beer was unfortunately presented as a national drink. However, our national drink is ayran,” he said. “There is no way you can defend as a lifestyle the consumption of alcohol which has no benefit to society, but on the contrary inflicts harm.”

Ayran is a non-alcoholic cold beverage of yogurt mixed with cold water and sometimes salt. Sounds delish.

Via: Al-Jazeera

No comments yet.

Leave a Reply