Saturday, 4 December 2021 | News today: 0

Turkey changes US Embassy street name to Malcolm X


Turkey on Thursday changed the name of the street on which the new US Embassy will be located after the American black Muslim civil rights campaigner, Malcolm X, AFP reports.

The new American embassy is still being built in the Cukurambar district in Ankara, on what was formerly called 1478 Street. Construction contractors BL Harbert have said the new complex is expected to be finished by 2020.

The renaming comes after the Ankara city council’s decision last month to change the name to Malcolm X Street.

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan promised the late campaigner’s daughters that the name of Malcolm X would “live on” in the Turkish capital.

Malcolm X, one of the most influential African Americans in history, was an outspoken Muslim advocate of the rights of blacks and remains a hero today to many blacks and followers of Islam.

Turkey has made similar changes to streets on which embassies are located, in bids to make political points against a country.

When Washington expressed concern over Turkey’s offensive in northern Syria against a US-backed Kurdish militia, Ankara in February renamed the road on which the current US Embassy is located, “Olive Branch” (Zeytin Dali in Turkish), after the name of the offensive.

In January, following a spat with the United Arab Emirates over the Ottoman Empire’s actions in Medina, Ankara renamed the street where the UAE embassy is after the Ottoman governor of the time.

Tempers flared after UAE Foreign Minister Sheikh Abdullah bin Zayed al-Nahyan retweeted a post on Twitter critical of the former Ottoman rulers of the region.