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Is This Woman Set To Be The First Turk In Space?

Ahu Aysel, owner of a hotel chain and ex-wife of the owner of Istanbul's most popular soccer team, has paid big bucks for the chance at becoming the first Turkish citizen to go into space. She must be chosen in a lottery to board a commercial flight that would last an hour.

Article illustrative image Partner logo Ahu Aysal pictured with Paris Hilton in March 2008 (



ISTANBUL - A 54 year-old hotel chain owner could become the first Turk to travel into space.

Ahu Aysal - who heads the Unit Tourism and Investment Co. hotel chain, and is the ex-wife of Ünal Aysal, the CEO of Galatasaray soccer team - is aiming to become the first Turk to travel to space. Aysal paid a $95,000 registration fee to a Dutch firm that plans to begin commercial flights into space in 2014. Aysel joins 200 other applicants, who will enter a lottery to determine who gets to make the trip first.

If all goes as planned, Aysal will have the opportunity to experience four minutes in an environment without gravity on a trip that should last about one hour.

Read more from Hürriyet in Turkish

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*Newsbites are digest items, not direct translations

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Hurriyet ("Liberty") is a leading Turkish newspaper founded by Sedat Simavi in May 1948. Based in Istanbul, the newspaper is printed in six cities in Turkey but also in Frankfurt, Germany. Owned by Aydin Dogan, some 600,000 copies of Hurriyet are distributed everyday.

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