Binali Yıldırım

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Binali Yıldırım
Binali Yıldırım.jpg
Minister of Transport, Maritime and Communication
Assumed office
24 November 2015
Prime Minister Ahmet Davutoğlu
Preceded by Feridun Bilgin
In office
6 July 2011 – 25 December 2013
Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdoğan
Preceded by Habip Soluk
Succeeded by Lütfi 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
Member of the Grand National Assembly
Assumed office
1 November 2015
Constituency İzmir (I) (Nov 2015)
In office
19 November 2002 – 7 June 2015
Constituency İstanbul (I) (2002)
Erzincan (2007)
İzmir (II) (2011)
Personal details
Born 1955 (age 60–61)
Refahiye, Turkey
Political party Justice and Development Party
Alma mater Istanbul Technical University
World Maritime University
Religion Islam

Binali Yıldırım (born 20 December 1955) is a Turkish politician who currently serves as the Minister of Transport, Maritime and Communication of Turkey since 24 November 2015. He previously served in the same position from 2002 to 2007, from 2007 to 2011, and from 2011 to 2013. A member of the ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP), he has served as a Member of Parliament for İstanbul's first electoral district from 2002 to 2007, for Erzincan from 2007 to 2011, for İzmir's second electoral district from 2011 to June 2015 and for İzmir's first electoral district since November 2015.

Life and career[edit]

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 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 as Minister of Transport, 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 with charges of 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 was also the source of numerous other controversies, including replying to criticisms about government surveillance of phone lines by saying: "If you are not up to anything illegal, don't worry about surveillance."[6]

Yıldırım was the unsuccessful AKP candidate for 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.