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Historian becomes minister’s advisor after donating books to presidential library

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Renowned Turkish historian Professor İlber Ortaylı was named an advisor to the culture and tourism minister shortly after he donated his personal library to the library of the presidential palace.

“İlber Ortaylı is the teacher of us all. He will make contributions on cultural issues as the minister’s advisor. We are all at the service of Turkish culture,” wrote Haluk Dursun, the deputy minister of culture and tourism, from his Twitter account on Monday.

Ortaylı met with President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan at the presidential palace in Ankara’s Beştepe neighborhood on Monday where he announced he was donating his books to the library of the presidential palace.

The historian has attracted widespread criticism for his move as it has been seen as an endorsement of the policies of Erdoğan, who has been carrying out an extensive crackdown on critics in the country over the past several years and is accused of establishing authoritarian rule.

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