Peter Kenyon

Peter Kenyon is NPR's international correspondent based in Istanbul, Turkey.

Prior to taking this assignment in 2010, Kenyon spent five years in Cairo covering Middle Eastern and North African countries from Syria to Morocco. He was part of NPR's team recognized with two Alfred I. duPont-Columbia University awards for outstanding coverage of post-war Iraq.

In addition to regular stints in Iraq, he has followed stories to Yemen, Saudi Arabia, Syria, Lebanon, Bahrain, Qatar, Algeria, Morocco and other countries in the region.

Arriving at NPR in 1995, Kenyon spent six years in Washington, D.C., working in a variety of positions including as a correspondent covering the US Senate during President Bill Clinton's second term and the beginning of the President George W. Bush's administration.

Kenyon came to NPR from the Alaska Public Radio Network. He began his public radio career in the small fishing community of Petersburg, where he met his wife Nevette, a commercial fisherwoman.

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Middle East
5:47 pm
Tue January 15, 2013

Turkey Promises Peace Talks With Kurdish Militants, Despite Paris Killings

Originally published on Tue January 15, 2013 7:54 pm

Transcript

ROBERT SIEGEL, HOST:

The government of Turkey is vowing to push ahead with efforts to end its long-running conflict with Kurdish militants. That's despite the killings last week of three female Kurdish activists that were shot in Paris. The murders are seen as an effort to derail the peace talks before they gain traction.

As NPR's Peter Kenyon reports from Istanbul, Turkey, Turkey has pushed for peace before. But many wonder if the lessons from past failures have been absorbed.

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Middle East
4:52 pm
Thu January 3, 2013

Turkey's AK Party Still Defies Easy Categorization

Originally published on Thu January 3, 2013 6:10 pm

It's been a decade since a coalition of Islamic and secular political parties formed the AKP, or Justice and Development Party, and swept to power in Turkey. Warnings from secular Turks about a secret agenda to impose Sharia law on the country proved groundless, and yet ten years into AKP rule, secular unease is on the rise again. European Union-style political and social reforms have ground to a halt in the past 18 months, and Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan seems bent on converting Turkey to a strong presidential system with himself at the helm, possibly for another decade.

Europe
3:23 am
Thu January 3, 2013

Prime Minister Finds Soap Opera's Turkish Delights In Bad Taste

Eggs streak down a billboard advertising the popular Turkish soap opera The Magnificent Century. The show focuses on palace intrigue during the 16th-century rule of Suleiman the Magnificent. Some Islamists have protested the show's depiction of the sultan's harem.
Murad Sezer Reuters via Landov

Originally published on Thu January 3, 2013 6:27 am

Suleiman the Magnificent was the longest-reigning sultan of the Ottoman Empire, presiding for nearly a half-century at the peak of the empire's power in the 16th century.

During Suleiman's rule from 1520 to 1566, the Ottomans were a political, economic and military powerhouse. Suleiman's forces sacked Belgrade, annexed much of Hungary and advanced across large parts of the Middle East and North Africa.

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Middle East
3:54 pm
Wed December 26, 2012

Head Of Military Police Defects To Syrian Opposition

Originally published on Wed December 26, 2012 7:24 pm

Transcript

ROBERT SIEGEL, HOST:

From NPR News this is ALL THINGS CONSIDERED. I'm Robert Siegel and we begin this hour with fighting in Syria and the terrible impact of that fighting on children. In a few minutes, we'll hear from a refugee camp in Turkey, where families have fled the violence. First, today the Syrian regime appeared to suffer another high level defection. NPR's Peter Kenyon is monitoring that news and other developments from Istanbul.

PETER KENYON, BYLINE: The day began with rebel fighters announcing a new offensive in the northern Raqqa Province.

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Middle East
6:30 am
Mon December 24, 2012

Syria Airstrike Update

Originally published on Mon December 24, 2012 7:09 am

Transcript

DAVID GREENE, HOST:

International envoy Lakhdar Brahimi met with Syrian leaders today hoping to solve that country's bloody conflict, but the bloodshed goes on. There are reports of explosions in Damascus today, government forces are battling rebel fighters, and civilians continue to perish in large numbers. The relentless violence, including an airstrike yesterday on a bakery, is draining hope for any diplomatic solution. NPR's Peter Kenyon filed this report from Istanbul.

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Middle East
3:40 pm
Fri November 30, 2012

In Istanbul, A Byzantine-Era Fleet Surfaces Again

Archaeologists call an excavation site on Istanbul's southern shore the world's largest shipwreck collection. The area, unearthed during construction of a railway station, was once a Byzantine-era port that harbored cargo and military vessels, and received goods from around the Mediterranean.
Gokce Saracoglu for NPR

Originally published on Mon December 3, 2012 8:24 pm

In Istanbul, major public transit projects are back under way after years of paralysis. The problem wasn't a lack of financing, but the layer upon layer of ancient artifacts that turned up every time the earthmovers started their work.

The excavation began eight years ago on projects intended to ease Istanbul's notoriously clogged traffic.

The job included building a tunnel under the Bosphorus Strait and linking it to a rail and subway network. When the dig was stopped several years ago, eyes rolled and shoulders shrugged.

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Middle East
7:33 am
Thu November 29, 2012

Is Iran Ready For A New Round Of Nuclear Talks?

Originally published on Thu December 13, 2012 8:39 am

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

There are increasing signals from Iran that it's open to a new round of talks on its suspect nuclear program. The last round was held in Moscow in June. And with the American campaign season over, new diplomatic efforts are being explored.

But domestic politics - this time in Iran - may still limit what can be achieved at the negotiating table, as NPR's Peter Kenyon reports from Istanbul.

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Middle East
7:33 am
Sun November 25, 2012

Bullet Dodged In Turkey, But Kurdish Conflict Lingers

Transcript

RACHEL MARTIN, HOST:

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Middle East
4:45 am
Thu November 22, 2012

Ruling Party's Shift Causes Consternation In Israel

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu (right) and Foreign Minister Avigdor Lieberman shake hands in front of the media after giving a statement in Jerusalem last month. Netanyahu said his Likud Party will join forces with the hard-line party of his foreign minister in upcoming parliamentary elections.
Bernat Armangue AP

Originally published on Sun November 25, 2012 10:02 am

Some analysts have suggested that one impetus for the Israeli military strikes in Gaza is the upcoming election season in Israel. With elections set for January, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu changed the political landscape last month by announcing that his Likud Party would run along with a right-wing party led by hawkish Foreign Minister Avigdor Lieberman.

Likud Party leaders complained that they were left in the dark before the prime minister effectively vaulted Lieberman into the No. 2 political position.

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Middle East
5:24 am
Sat November 10, 2012

As Turkey Rises, 'A Real Problem' With Censorship

Kurdish women hold pictures of jailed journalists in Istanbul on Sept. 10, during the start of the trial of 44 journalists with suspected links to rebels from the Kurdistan Workers' Party.
Bulent Kilic AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Sat November 10, 2012 2:25 pm

Nearly two years ago, Soner Yalcin and more than a dozen of his employees at the online news outlet OdaTV joined the growing list of incarcerated Turkish journalists. Yalcin, the owner of OdaTV, is one of the sharpest critics of Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan's government.

As their trial proceedings dragged on, challenges to the state's case grew, and most of the outlet's journalists were released, pending the trial's conclusion. But Yalcin and two others remain behind bars, 22 months and counting.

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