An independent lawmaker submitted a proposal to the Parliament Oct. 30 to change the name of the eastern Van province to “Wan.”
“The change of the province’s name into its original one will amount to the return from the arbitrary anti-democratic decision made against the culture of the people in the region,” Van deputy Aysel Tuğluk, a former Peace and Democracy Party (BDP) lawmaker, said in her proposition.
“[The change] will also ensure the name’s phonetic pronunciation is correctly made,” she added.
The ban on the letters “q, x and w,” all used in the Kurdish alphabet but forbidden in official documents, was lifted by the government’s democratization package announced on Sept. 30.
Any use of these letters on signboards and in names was subject to fines before the abolition of the ban. The town located along Lake Van is, however, commonly referred to as “Wan” by Kurds.
The package also paved the way to changing back the name of the eastern province of Tunceli to Dersim, although a legal amendment is needed.