According to The National, Israeli progressive folk metal masters ORPHANED LAND have applied for Turkish citizenship.
Despite the Israeli ambassador in Ankara being expelled and relations between the two countries being downgraded every year for the past four, ORPHANED LAND is “trying to be above politics and to deal only with friendship and brotherhood between the nations,” the band’s lead vocalist, Kobi Farhi, said.
ORPHANED LAND was previously given a “Friendship And Peace Award” by Turkey for its contributions to peace in the troubled region.
“Turkey is a magical, wonderful country and I could easily see myself living there,” Farhi said. “I say ‘There is a Turk hidden inside of me.”
Kobi and his bandmates hope to hear by the end of the month if they will be granted Turkish citizenship. They intend to keep their Israeli passports.
Farhi spoke about his love of playing Turkey before the band’s concert in Istanbul in September 2011. “We’re always glad to return to Turkey, and not only are we not afraid — we feel at home there,” he said. “There are people there who sing with us in Hebrew and we don’t face any hostility in Turkey.”
Since many Arab countries do not allow Israeli musicians to enter, Arabs from Turkey’s neighboring countries regularly travel there for ORPHANED LAND performances.