Interestingly, Markovitch himself has just recently become a citizen of Turkey, with the specific aid of Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan. According to the Vatican City representative, he and his 84 year old older sister have been trying for the past 20 years to obtain citizenship. Said Marovitch: "These are the lands where we were born and grew up. My line of ancestry has been here since the Ottoman times. Like every Turkish youth, I have attached great importance to working for my country. I am honored and happy to do so."