Hatay is a province of southern Turkey, situated between the Mediterranean Sea to the west and Syria to the south and east. Capital Antakya, formerly Antioch. Biblical Alexandretta is also located within the province, but known by its Turkish name, Iskenderun.

Hatay was not originally within the borders of the Republic of Turkey, but instead was part of the French mandate over Syria following World War One. The area was a multi-ethnic melting pot of Turks, Arabs, Maronites, Armenians, Jews, and Greeks. Mustafa Kemal Ataturk desired that it become part of Turkey, claiming that the plurality of its citizens were Turkish. A League of Nations inquiry and plebiscite bore him out, and, after negotiations with a French government wary of getting involved in an overseas conflict while Germany posed a clear military threat on its immediate borders, gave Hatay its independence in 1938. The Republic of Hatay was independent for one year, after which it voted for unification with Turkey. Syria does not recognize the incorporation of Hatay within Turkey.