Binali Yıldırım

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Binali Yıldırım
Minister of Transport, Maritime and Communication
In office
6 July 2011 – 25 December 2013
Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdoğan
Preceded by Habip Soluk
Succeeded by Lütfü Elvan
In office
29 August 2007 – 8 March 2011
Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdoğan
Preceded by İsmet Yılmaz
Succeeded by Habip Soluk
In office
18 November 2002 – 8 May 2007
Prime Minister Abdullah Gül
Recep Tayyip Erdoğan
Preceded by Naci Kınacıoğlu
Succeeded by İsmet Yılmaz
Personal details
Born 1955 (age 59–60)
Refahiye, Turkey
Political party Justice and Development Party
Alma mater Istanbul Technical University
World Maritime University
Religion Islam

Binali Yıldırım (born 20 December 1955 Erzincan) is a Turkish politician and the former Minister of Transport, Maritime and Communication of Turkey and a MP for Izmir of the ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP).

Born in Refahiye, Erzincan Province to a Kurdish family originally from Ağrı,[1] Yıldırım was educated at the Istanbul Technical University's School of Maritime in Naval Architecture and Ocean Engineering and in 1991 he graduated from the World Maritime University with a Master of Science degree in Maritime Safety and Environmental Protection. After graduation, Yıldırım served as the director general of the Istanbul Fast Ferries Company (İDO) from 1994 to 2000 while the current Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdoğan was mayor of Istanbul.

He entered politics and became a co-founder of the Justice and Development Party in August 2001. During his term of transport minister, Turkey met with high-speed rail lines. Under his leadership, Turkey constructed high-speed rail between Ankara-Eskişehir and Ankara-Konya. Also Eskisehir-Istanbul line is under construction to connect Istanbul and Ankara. The project collapsed after the fatal derailment of a train in Pamukova, Sakarya Province on 22 July 2004 during one of the first journeys between Istanbul and Eskişehir. Calls for Yıldırım's resignation followed the incident.[2]

His repeated appointment to the ministry was declared by Prime Minister Erdoğan on 6 July 2011 with other members of the new cabinet.[3] He was removed from office on 25 December 2013 in a cabinet reshuffle.

A photograph of Yıldırım's veiled wife seated separately from him during a business lunch went viral and produced an outcry in Turkey in 2005, many criticizing him for sexism.[4] On another occasion, he commented that he did not attend Boğaziçi University in his youth because he "saw boys and girls sitting and talking together in the university's yard" and found the genders intermixing unacceptable.[5] As the minister of communications, Yıldırım has also been the source of numerous other controversies, including replying to criticisms about government surveillance of phone lines with, "If you are not up to anything illegal, don't worry about surveillance."[6]

Yıldırım was the unsuccessful AKP candidate for the mayor of İzmir against incumbent Aziz Kocaoğlu in the 2014 local elections in Turkey.


  1. ^ Bakan Binali Yıldırım Kürt mü?, Adnan Öksüz, 27 January 2013, Milli Gazete
  2. ^ Binali Yıldırım'ın oğlu Erkan Yıldırımın gemi sahibi olması basından tepki alıyor,
  3. ^ [1]
  4. ^ "Dayatma mı tercih mi?". Radikal. 29 November 2013. Retrieved 10 January 2009. 
  5. ^ "Binali Yıldırım'ın gafı Penguen'e kapak oldu!". Medyafaresi. 6 February 2013. Retrieved 25 December 2013. 
  6. ^ "Politik mesajlar nasıl işler?". Milliyet (in Turkish). 31 January 2013. Retrieved 25 December 2013.