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Nationalist Movement Party (Turkey)

Milliyetçi Hareket Partisi - MHP

Last modified: 2014-07-26 by ivan sache
Keywords: nationalist movement party |
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Flag of MHP - Image by Onur Özgün, 9 August 2001

See also:

Presentation of MHP

MHP was established in 1969 as a successor of the Republican Villagers Nation Party (Cumhuriyetçi Kóylü Millet Partisi, CKMP), established in 1958. Together with its youth organization, the Grey Wolves, MHP was banned by the Turkish military government in 1980 as a terrorist group. Restored in 1992 after a plebiscite, MHP was member of the Turkish government from 1998 to 2002. Since 2002 it is no longer represented in parliament.

Klaus-Michael Schneider, 28 April 2014

Flag of MHP

The flag of MHP, adopted in February 1969, is made of three white crescents on a red field. The flag is similar to the army flag used in the early times of the Ottoman Empire in early times.
The above image was drawn after the party website and television images.

Onur Özgün, 9 August 2001

Variants of the flag


Flag with broad crescents - Image by Ivan Sache, 27 June 2003

The flag of MHP is often used by football fans. For instance, a variant of the official party's flag was seen on 23 June 2003 in the Geoffroy-Guichard Stadium at Saint-Étienne (France), during the Turkey-Brazil (2-2) match of the Confederations' Cup. On this particular flag, the size and placement of the crescents was different, the crescents being similar to the "regular" crescents displayed on the Turkish flag. There was, apparently, only one MHP-like flag among the flood of Turkish flags.

Ivan Sache, 27 June 2003


Flag with a green field - Image by Tomislav Todorović, 28 January 2012

MHP sometimes uses the flag with a green field instead of red (photo). According to Wikipedia, these flags were used in the Ottoman Empire as the naval flags until 1844 and as flags of the Caliphate (1844-1923).
As can be seen, the crescents are placed close to the hoist. The red flags seem to dominate though, because they are seen almost everywhere, while green flags are seldom seen on photos.

Tomislav Todorović, 30 April 2014

Flags with the party's logo

The party's logo (party website) is a red disk charged with three white crescents, arranged as on the flag, within a narrow white circular frame.

[Flag]         [Flag]

Flags with the party's logo - Images by Tomislav Todorović & Klaus-Michael Schneider, 30 April 2014

The party's logo device sometimes appears in center of red (photo, photo) flags, and, rarely, on white flags (photos, no longer online).

[Flag]         [Flag]

Flags with the party's logo, as seen on 21 April 2013 at the party's office in Konak (Izmir) - Images by Klaus-Michael Schneider & Tomislav Todorović, 30 April 2014

A red vertical flag features the party's logo in the upper part. Benath the logo is the white acronym "MHP", flanked by two white rectangles, both thin as stripes and open at the edges of the flag. The flag aslo exists with counterchanged colours (red on white).

Tomislav Todorović & Klaus-Michael Schneider, 1 May 2014

Idealist Youth / Grey Wolves

[Flag]         [MHP flag]

Flag of the Idealist Youth, horizontal and vertical versions - Images by Klaus-Michael Schneider, 29 April 2014

The "unofficial" youth organization of MHP, Idealist Youth (Ülkücü Gençlik), akak Gray Wolves, has local branches known as Idealist Associations (Ülkü ocakları). Its members call themselves Idealists (Ülkücüle).
The aim of the Idealists is the restoration of Turan, a Turkish empire spreading from the Balkans to the Chinese province of Xinjiang via Central Asia, and to unite all Turkish-speaking peoples. They fight against Kurds, but also against Jews, Christians, Masons and communists; they are also opposed to Armenians, Greeks, Russians, the European Union, the USA and Israel. They are said to have committed 694 murders between 1974 and 1980.

The Idealist Youth uses a celestial blue displaying the white she-wolf Asena upon a lying crescent of the same colour. The flag is displayed either horizontally (photo, photo, photo) or vertically (photo, photo).
Asena played an important role in Turkish mythology as the progenitress of the Turan tribes. A legend tells of a young boy who survived the massacre of his tribe. Found by Asena, the injured boy was nursed back to health by the she-wolf. Asena, impregnated by the boy, escaped her enemies by crossing the Western Sea to a cave near the Qocho mountains, where she gave birth to ten half-wolf, half-human boys. Asena established a clan that ruled over the Göktürk and other Turkic nomadic empires later on.
The Göktürk lived in North and Central Asia and northwestern China. Under the leadership of Bumin Khan and his sons they established the first known Turkic state around 552, as the main power in the region. They were the first Turkish tribe to use the name "Türk" as a political name. The empire was split into a western and an eastern part around 600 and reunited in 680. Spreading out from the Caspian Sea to Manchuria, the Göktürk empire ended around 744.
With the rise of Turkish ethnic nationalism in the 1930s, the veneration of figures of Turkic mythology, such as Bozkurt and Asena, rose again. Later in the 20th Century, the ultra nationalist movement called Grey Wolves (Bozkurtlar / Bozkurtçular) was named after Asena. Bozkurt literally means "a celestial wolf" or "a blue wolf".

Klaus-Michael Schneider & Tomislav Todorović, 30 April 2014

Variants of the flag

[Variant]         [Variant]

Flag with red background, horizontal and vertical versions - Images by Klaus-Michael Schneider, 30 April 2014

The flag is sometimes used with a red background, either horizontally (photo, photo, photo) or vertically (photo).

Tomislav Todorović, 30 April 2014

Flag with Grey Wolves and MHP symbols


Grey Wolves / MHP flag - Image by Klaus-Michael Schneider, 30 April 2014

The red flag can also be charged with the symbols of both the Grey Wolves (at the top, the she-wolf without the crescent) and MHP (at the bottom, three white crescents ordered 2 and 1 and pointing downwards) (photo).

Tomislav Todorović & Klaus-Michael Schneider, 30 April 2014