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Turkey Nationalists Protest ‘Mulan’

January 23, 1999

ISTANBUL, Turkey (AP) _ A Turkish nationalist party wants the Disney animated film ``Mulan″ off the screens, saying Saturday it unfairly shows Huns in a bad light.

``Mulan,″ the story of a Chinese woman warrior who disguises herself as a man, opened in theaters throughout the country this week to coincide with a three-week school holiday. Mulan fights off the Huns, who invade from the north.

``From start to finish, this animated film distorts and blackens the history of the Turks by showing the Huns as bad and the Chinese as peace-lovers,″ Nazif Okumus, a deputy head of the Nationalist Movement Party, told reporters.

Okumus urged the Culture Ministry to take action against the film.

``The film can cause Turkey and the Turkish nation a bigger blow than the film `Midnight Express,‴ said Okumus, referring to the 1978 movie that portrays a young American brutalized in a Turkish prison.

The Nationalist Movement Party, which has a relatively strong following but no seats in Parliament, was known in the Cold War for its pro-Turkic nationalist policies. It frequently promotes the legends of the Turkic people’s Asiatic warrior ancestors.

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