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Gaziantep (gäˌzēänˈtĕp) [key], formerly Aintab Īntäbˈ, city (1990 pop. 627,584), capital of Gaziantep prov., S Turkey. Gaziantep is an important trading and manufacturing center known for its textiles, pistachio nuts, copperware, and furniture inlaid with mother-of-pearl. An ancient Hittite city, it was occupied (8th cent. B.C.) by Sargon of Assyria. It occupied a strategic position in the Crusades and was taken by Saladin in 1183. It was the center of Turkish resistance (1920–21) to the French occupation of the region. After a long siege it was captured by the French, but was returned to Turkey in 1921. For its heroic resistance the city was awarded the title of Gazi, which means "Warrior for the Faith" or "Veteran," and from that time has been known as Gaziantep.

The Columbia Electronic Encyclopedia, 6th ed. Copyright © 2012, Columbia University Press. All rights reserved.

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