The Republic of Turkey is a country of 70 million people consisting of the Anatolian Peninsula and parts of Thrace. Its largest city is Istanbul, although the capital is Ankara. The majority of the people are Muslims, but the country is officially secular. Turkey is the successor to the Ottoman Empire, which collapsed in 1922. In ancient times, there were Greek colonies on the Turkish coast, and large parts of the area were later ruled by the Byzantine Empire. Turkey controls the strategically important Bosphorus straits.