Turkey Informs U.N. it is Rebranding to a Name From 99 Years Ago

Turkey has asked the United Nations (U.N.) to be formally recognized by another name.

Mevlut Cavusoglu, Turkey's foreign minister, submitted a letter asking that his country be referred to as "Turkiye," according to the Associated Press.

Turkey, AP reported, began calling itself "Turkiye" in 1923, when the republic was founded and Kemal Atatürk became its first president. Turkey's request is also seen as an attempt to remove its association with the bird commonly eaten during the Thanksgiving holiday, AP reported.

Late last year, Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan requested that all products that are made in and exported from his country have a "Made in Turkiye" seal on them, AP said.

Turkey ask UN for name change
Turkey has asked the United Nations to be referred to as Turkiye. Above, Mevlut Cavusoglu, the country's foreign minister, speaks at a press conference in Antalya, Turkey, on March 10, 2022. Ozan Guzelce/Getty Images

Stephane Dujarric, spokesperson for the U.N. Secretary General, confirmed to Newsweek that the Turkish Foreign Ministry reached out to the organization earlier this and said that it wanted its name to be referred to in U.N. meetings and documents as Turkiye.

He added that "while it does not happen every day, it is not unusual for countries to ask the United Nations to change the way their country is designated in official UN settings."

Dujarric also told AP that Turkey's request became official "from the moment" the request was received.

Turkey asked the U.N. for the name change after last week saying it intends to block Finland and Sweden's inclusion in the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO).

Turkey objects to the two Nordic countries joining NATO due to their supposed lax attitude towards the Kurdistan Workers' Party (PKK) militants, an organization that is listed as a terrorist group by the United States, the European Union and Turkey.

The PKK has been a war for independence against Turkey since 1984.

Turkey has accused the two countries of harboring members of the PKK. Also, last week, Turkey said that it recently discovered anti-tank weapons from Sweden being used by the PKK.

In addition to Turkey, Russia has also objected to Finland and Sweden's inclusion in NATO. Earlier this month, Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Ryabkov said that "they [NATO] should not have any illusions that we will simply put up with this—in Brussels, Washington, and other NATO capitals."

Newsweek reached out to the Turkish Foreign Ministry of Affairs for comment.