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11 killed, 50 injured in pileup on highway in northwestern Turkey

Eleven people were killed and more than 50 others were injured in a road accident in northwestern Turkiye on Thursday (December 28), Reuters news agency reported, citing local media. The incident occurred on the Northern Marmara Highway near the Dagdibi neighborhood in Sakarya province. According to information from the state-run Anadolu news agency, seven vehicles were involved in the accident, including three buses and a truck.

Anadolu said an investigation into the circumstances that led to the accident was ongoing. However, NTV, a private news channel, highlighted that the area was shrouded in dense fog at the time of the incident, reducing visibility.

The Sakarya provincial governor confirmed that 57 injured persons were immediately transported to nearby hospitals for medical treatment, Reuters reported.

In a separate development, Turkey’s Radio and Television Supreme Council (RTUK) has imposed a two-week broadcast suspension on the widely watched television series “Kizil Gonçalar” (Crimson Buds), Reuters reports. The action has been taken in response to claims that the series contradicts “the national and spiritual values ​​of the society”.

Ilhan Tasci, a RTUK board member representing the main opposition, shared on the X social media platform that the regulatory body has imposed a 3% administrative fine on Fox TV, a subsidiary of Walt Disney Co.’s Fox Networks group.

“Kizil Gonçalar”, which highlights the social divide between religious and secular spheres, was first criticized on 18 December. Despite this, its initial episode achieved significant viewership and reached over 10 million views on YouTube.

RTUK has a history of punishing programs it considers to violate Turkish cultural and moral standards. Such actions have often faced criticism from opposition groups, citing concerns over freedom of expression.

Meanwhile, Labor Minister Vedat Isikhan announced that Turkiye’s monthly minimum wage will be 17,002 Turkish lira ($578.31) in 2024. This represents a substantial increase of 49% since July and is double the figure recorded in January.

Turkey’s annual inflation rate rose to 61.98% in November, its peak for the year. The surge comes after the currency fell sharply in 2021, with the lira losing about 35% of its value this year, pushing up the cost of living for the population.

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