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Jan 17 2019

Turkish municipality wants camel wrestling on UNESCO list

Selçuk, a Turkish municipality headquarted near the western resort town of Kusadasi, will apply to the United Nations Educational Scientific and Cultural Organisation (UNESCO) to have camel wrestling included in the organisation’s Intangible World Heritage List, Yeni Akit newspaper said on Wednesday.

The district hosts a camel wrestling festival every year. The 2019 festival will start on Dec. 20.

Dahi Zeynel Bakıcı, the mayor of Selçuk, said that the district’s camel wrestling competitions were significant in terms of their historical and cultural nature. He said comprehensive preparatory work was needed before the application was submitted for approval

The sport involves two male Tülü camels wrestling, typically in response to a female camel on heat being led before them. It is most common in the Aegean region of Turkey, but also occurs in other parts of the Middle East and South Asia

Camel fighting began among ancient Turkic tribes over 2,400 years ago, but camels also wrestle naturally in the wild.