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Turks in Libya

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Title: Turks in Libya  
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Subject: Kouloughlis, Turks in Europe, Turks in Kosovo, Turks in the Republic of Macedonia, Turks in Germany
Collection: Ethnic Groups in Libya, Turkish Diaspora by Country, Turkish Diaspora in Africa
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Turks in Libya

Turks in Libya
Total population
Ottoman-Turkish descendants:
35,000 (about 5% of Libya's population) in 1936[1]
Turkish citizens:
Including those of ancestral descent:
est. 80,000[3]
Regions with significant populations

Turks in Libya, also known as Libyan Turks, (Turkish: Libya Türkleri) are the ethnic Turks who live in Libya. During the Ottoman rule of Libya, the Turks colonized and dominated the political life of the region, as a result, the ethnic mix of Libya changed with the migration of Turks from Anatolia and the evolvement of the "Kouloughlis" (also referred to as "Cologhlis"[4]) who are people of mixed Turkish and Maghrebi blood.[5] There has also been a modern wave of migration since 1975 from Turkey.


  • History 1
    • Ottoman migration 1.1
    • Modern migration 1.2
  • Notable people 2
  • See also 3
  • References 4
  • Bibliography 5


Ottoman migration

When the Ottoman Empire conquered Libya in 1551 the Turks began migrating to the region, as a consequence, many Turkish soldiers married Arab women and their children were known as the "Kouloughlis" (also referred to as the "Cologhla", "Qulaughli" and "Cologhli").[6] By 1936 the Turkish community numbered about 35,000,[1] of which 30,000 lived along the Tripolitanian coast.[6] Today there are still Libyans who regard their ethnicity as Turkish, or acknowledge their descendants to the Turkish soldiers who settled in the area during the Ottoman rule.[7]

Modern migration

Turkish labour migration has traditionally been to European countries within the context of bilateral agreements.[8][9][10]

Emigration of Turkish workers to Libya[11]
Year Population
1961-1973 664
1974-1980 48,457
1981-1985 106,735

Notable people

See also


  1. ^ a b Pan 1949, 103.
  2. ^ Turkish Weekly. "Turkey Struggles with Chaotic Evacuation of Citizens from Libya". Retrieved 2011-02-22. 
  3. ^ Harzig, Juteau & Schmitt 2006, 67.
  4. ^ Ahmida 2009, 23.
  5. ^ Stone 1997, 29.
  6. ^ a b Dupree 1958, 41.
  7. ^ Malcolm & Losleben 2004, 62.
  8. ^ Sirageldin 2003, 236
  9. ^ Papademetriou & Martin 1991, 123
  10. ^ Ergener 2002, 76
  11. ^ Papademetriou & Martin 1991, 120.
  12. ^ Milliyet. "Libya'nın ilk Türk başbakanı". Retrieved 09-10-2014. 


  • Ahmida, Ali Abdullatif (2009), The Making of Modern Libya: State Formation, Colonization, and Resistance (Print), Albany, N.Y: SUNY Press,  .
  • Dupree, Louis (1958), "The Non-Arab Ethnic Groups of Libya", Middle East Journal 12 (1): 33–44 
  • Ergener, Reşit (2002), About Turkey: Geography, Economy, Politics, Religion, and Culture, Pilgrims Process,  .
  • Fuller, Graham E. (2008), The New Turkish Republic: Turkey as a pivotal state in the Muslim world, US Institute of Peace Press,  .
  • Harzig, Christiane; Juteau, Danielle; Schmitt, Irina (2006), The Social Construction of Diversity: Recasting the Master Narrative of Industrial Nations, Berghahn Books,  .
  • Malcolm, Peter; Losleben, Elizabeth (2004), Libya, Marshall Cavendish,  .
  • Pan, Chia-Lin (1949), "The Population of Libya", Population Studies 3 (1): 100–125,  
  • Papademetriou, Demetrios G.; Martin, Philip L. (1991), The Unsettled Relationship: Labor Migration and Economic Development, Greenwood Publishing Group,  .
  • Sirageldin, Ismail Abdel-Hamid (2003), Human Capital: Population Economics in the Middle East, American University in Cairo Press,  .
  • Stone, Martin (1997), The Agony of Algeria, C. Hurst & Co. Publishers,  .
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