Turks in Bulgaria, or the Bulgarian Turks (Turkish: Bulgaristan Türkleri, Bulgarian: български турци ), are the largest ethnic minority in Bulgaria. They are mostly concentrated in the northeast provinces of Shumen, Silistra, Razgrad, Targovishte and Kardzhali provinces in the south.
Turks in Bulgaria are descendants of Turkic settlers, main part Karamanids exiled from Anatolia. They came across the narrows of the Dardanelles and the Bosporus following the Ottoman conquest of the Balkans in the late 14th and early 15th centuries, as well as Bulgarian converts to Islam who became Turkified during the centuries of Ottoman rule. It has also been suggested that some Turks living today in Bulgaria may be direct ethnic descendants of earlier medieval Pecheneg, Oğuz, and Cuman Turkic tribes. The Turkish community became an ethnic minority when the Principality of Bulgaria was established after the Russo-Turkish War of 1877-78. This community is of Turkish ethnic consciousness and differs from the majority Bulgarian ethnicity and the rest of the Bulgarian nation by its own language, religion, culture, customs, and traditions. DNA research investigating the three largest population groups in Bulgaria: Bulgarians, Bulgarian Turks and Gypsies confirms with Y-chromosomal STR haplotype analysis that there are significant differences between the three ethnic groups. The study revealed a high number of population-specific haplotypes and a low degree of haplotype sharing between the three ethnic communities.
Read more about Turks In Bulgaria: Summary, History, Turkish Names of Cities, Towns, Villages and Geographical Locations, Demographics, Literature By Turks in Bulgaria, Distribution of Turkish Dialects in Bulgaria, See Also, Further Reading
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