19 March 2007
ESI on the Iranian border

As part of a comprehensive report on the changing position of women in Turkey which ESI is preparing, analyst Nigar Goksel was in the eastern province of Van, bordering Iran, between March 19th and 23rd.

Traditional and semi-feudal family structures, very high birth rates, proximity to over a decade of conflict in Southeast Anatolia, widespread poverty, and distance from Ankara make Van an especially interesting location to examine the extent to which reality is really changing for women in Turkey.

Map showing VAN province in south eastern Turkey

Nigar Göksel on lake Van

Ahdamar Church - officially re-opened with a special ceremony on March 29th 2007. The church is on an island on Lake Van.

Women of Van dressed in traditional garments for the Nevruz festival
About us
Photo credits
Alan Grant is an Irish photographer who travelled extensively in the Balkans and other countries and regions of the world. Thanks to him, ESI is able to show fascinating pictures of the Balkans: the facades of Tirana, the painted mosques of Travnik, the fabulous old houses of Plovdiv and the spectacular blue of water - dark in the Bay of Kotor, emerald in the river valleys of Bosnia, deep blue in Ohrid, twinkling in the Aegean Sea and on the Bosporus.

You can find out more about Alan Grant on his websites:
Jonathan Lewis lives between London and Istanbul. He moved to London and spent many years studying photography and now specialises in photojournalism, documentary photography and commercial work for a wide variety of private and commercial clients in the UK, Europe and Turkey. His work has appeared in a number of magazines and publications and is used on the ESI website as well.

You can find out more about Jonathan Lewis on his website www.jonathanlewisphoto.com