With his band’s visit one of the most anticipated events on Istanbul’s cultural calendar this year, U2 singer Bono took time out of preparations for Monday’s concert by meeting Sunday with Turkey’s prime minister.
The meeting at the prime minister’s office at Dolmabahçe Palace featured Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan, the leader’s daughter, Sümeyye Erdoğan, Turkey’s chief European Union negotiator, Egemen Bağış, and State Minister Hayati Yazıcı.
Bono gave the Turkish prime minister a red iPod Nano, which he said would benefit the Global Fund to Fight Against AIDS.
The Irish rock star also told Erdoğan he knew the prime minister was a great fan of Turkish classical music. The prime minister then posed with the band for the press to take photos although the rest of their meeting occurred behind closed doors.
Bono’s program for the later part of the day was to include a walk on the Bosphorus Bridge with ministers.
Yazıcı and Bağış were to accompany him as the Hürriyet Daily News and Economic Review went to print.
U2 will perform in Istanbul for the very first time Monday as part of its 360º Tour on Monday evening.
The rock band will be on stage at the Istanbul’s Atatürk Olympic Stadium, contributing to Istanbul 2010 European Capital of Culture festivities. The U2 Istanbul concert is being organized by LiveNation, in collaboration with the Istanbul Foundation for Culture and Arts, or İKSV, and Pozitif.