Search

You searched for: Content Type Special Report Remove constraint Content Type: Special Report Political Geography Turkey Remove constraint Political Geography: Turkey Publication Year within 10 Years Remove constraint Publication Year: within 10 Years
Number of results to display per page

Search Results

  • Author: Max Erdemandi
  • Publication Date: 01-2020
  • Content Type: Special Report
  • Institution: Georgetown Journal of International Affairs
  • Abstract: Recent discussions on the Turkish state’s actions, which have devastated Kurdish people within and outside of its borders, suffer from a familiar deficiency: they neglect the historical and cultural foundations of the dynamics that placed the Kurdish people at the center of Turkey’s national security policy. Serious human rights violations and voter suppression in southeast Turkey, the massacre of Kurdish people in various parts of northern Syria, and purging of Kurdish politicians on false accusations are all extensions of Turkey’s decades-long, repeated policy mistakes, deeply rooted in its nationalist history. Unless there is a seismic shift in the drivers of Turkish security policy, especially as it pertains to the Kurdish people, Turkey is bound to repeat these mistakes. Furthermore, threat externalization with linkage to legitimacy of rule will further erode the democratic institutions of the state and other authentic aspects of Turkish identity.
  • Topic: Security, Nationalism, Ethnicity, Syrian War, Borders, Violence, Kurds
  • Political Geography: Turkey, Middle East, Syria, Kurdistan
  • Author: H. Sebnem Düzgün
  • Publication Date: 02-2020
  • Content Type: Special Report
  • Institution: Georgetown Journal of International Affairs
  • Abstract: The Soma Mine Disaster (SMD) was the most massive mine disaster of the twenty-first century, with 301 fatalities. This was due to a mine fire in an underground coal mine. Although mine fires usually do not cause a large number of casualties in comparison with other explosions in underground coal mines, the SMD has an anomaly. The cause of the mine fire has not been precisely determined, though various groups of experts developed several hypotheses. Most of the fatalities were due to an inadequate safety culture, unstructured organizational and human performance, and improper decision-making and risk perception during the emergency management. So far, only minimal steps have been taken to improve the safety standards of the coal mines. Larger improvements are necessary to address the variety of factors that contributed to the disaster.
  • Topic: Disaster Relief, Science and Technology, Natural Resources, Labor Issues, Regulation, Mining
  • Political Geography: Turkey, Middle East
  • Author: International Crisis Group
  • Publication Date: 06-2020
  • Content Type: Special Report
  • Institution: International Crisis Group
  • Abstract: What’s new? Turkey has to deal with thousands of citizens who travelled to join ISIS and have now returned. Of the few convicted, many will soon be released from jail. Others are under surveillance. The fate of the rest is murky. Why does it matter? ISIS’s diminished stature and measures adopted by the Turkish authorities have spared Turkey from ISIS attacks for more than three years. But while the threat should not be overplayed, it has not necessarily disappeared. That Turkish returnees turn their back on militancy is important for national and regional security. What should be done? Ankara’s approach toward returnees or others suspected of ties to jihadism relies mostly on surveillance and detention. The government could consider also offering support for returnees’ families, alternatives for youngsters at risk of being drawn into militancy and support for returnees released after serving ISIS-related jail time.
  • Topic: Human Rights, Law Enforcement, Violent Extremism, Islamic State
  • Political Geography: Turkey, Middle East
  • Author: International Crisis Group
  • Publication Date: 05-2020
  • Content Type: Special Report
  • Institution: International Crisis Group
  • Abstract: With the Syrian regime’s offensive in Idlib paused, the time is now for a deal sparing the rebellion’s last stronghold the full wrath of reconquest. The parties should pursue an improved ceasefire including the regime, Russia, Turkey and the Islamist militants entrenched in the province. What’s new? A Russian-backed Syrian regime offensive against rebel-held Idlib halted when Russia and Turkey negotiated a ceasefire in March. Turkey is sending reinforcements, signalling a military response to what it deems a national security threat. For now, this step may dissuade Russia from resuming the offensive, but the standoff appears untenable. Why does it matter? Successive Russian-Turkish ceasefires in Idlib have collapsed over incompatible objectives, diverging interpretations and exclusion of the dominant rebel group, Hei’at Tahrir al-Sham (HTS), which is UN-sanctioned and considered by Russia and others a terrorist organisation. A Russian-backed regime offensive to retake Idlib likely would result in humanitarian catastrophe. What should be done? All actors should seek a more sustainable ceasefire – optimally including HTS, notwithstanding legitimate concerns about the group – that avoids the high military, political and humanitarian price of another offensive. Turkey should push HTS to continue distancing itself from transnational militancy and display greater tolerance for political and religious pluralism.
  • Topic: Non State Actors, Conflict, Syrian War, Islamism, Proxy War
  • Political Geography: Russia, Turkey, Middle East, Syria, Idlib
  • Author: International Crisis Group
  • Publication Date: 04-2020
  • Content Type: Special Report
  • Institution: International Crisis Group
  • Abstract: Turkish intervention in Libya’s war stopped the besieged Tripoli government from collapsing. But fighting with Field Marshal Khalifa Haftar’s forces has since escalated, threatening a protracted conflict. Both Ankara and Haftar’s regional backers should urge their allies toward a return to negotiations and a ceasefire. What’s new? In January, Turkey stepped up military support to Libya’s UN-backed government of Prime Minister Faiez Serraj, stalling an offensive by forces allied with Field Marshal Khalifa Haftar. Its foray, underpinned by its own strategic, political and economic interests, has further complicated the already multi-layered Libyan crisis. Why does it matter? Turkey’s intervention has neither de-escalated the conflict nor yielded productive negotiations between rival political and military factions. It has instead exposed a different risk: the more outside actors provide military hardware and fighters to their respective Libyan allies, the longer the conflict may last and the deadlier it may become. What should be done? As Turkey’s intervention appears not to be producing a ceasefire or a return to negotiations, and since no outside actor is likely to back out unilaterally, Ankara should engage with other external players involved in the conflict to explore potential compromises regarding their respective interests in Libya and beyond.
  • Topic: Military Intervention, Conflict, Negotiation, Crisis Management, Proxy War
  • Political Geography: Turkey, Middle East, Libya
  • Author: Jakob Lindgaard, Moritz Pieper, Cecilie Felicia Stokholm Banke
  • Publication Date: 05-2020
  • Content Type: Special Report
  • Institution: Danish Institute for International Studies
  • Abstract: Turkey-NATO relations are still sufficiently strong to keep the relationship from the brink, a new DIIS-report finds. But more dynamics are also gaining strength to render further troubles increasingly likely. The future of Turkey’s NATO membership has been the subject of heated debate of late, from both outside and within Turkey. What ramifications will Turkey’s purchase of the Russian S-400 surface-to-air anti-missile system have for Turkey’s NATO future? Has the Syrian conflict exposed deep strategic differences between Turkey and other key NATO members? In response to such questions, a number of foreign policy practitioners as well as researchers and long-standing Turkey watchers have cautioned that a number of centripetal forces – dynamics that keep member states together - remain sufficiently strong at a structural level to keep Turkey-NATO relations on track. There seems to be widespread agreement on both sides that the alternative is simply worse. At the same time, the report also argues that these centripetal forces are losing their strength, and that centrifugal forces pulling the alliance apart are gaining strength and salience. Barring wild card developments, the net result is that this will increase the likelihood of further troubles ahead for Turkey-NATO relations The report is based on an analysis of the published policy commentary, scholarly literature, as well as a series of semi-structured interviews conducted with practitioners and academic experts during the course of 2019.
  • Topic: Foreign Policy, Defense Policy, NATO, Diplomacy, International Organization
  • Political Geography: Russia, Eurasia, Turkey, Middle East, Denmark
  • Author: Kamal A. Beyoghlow
  • Publication Date: 01-2020
  • Content Type: Special Report
  • Institution: The Strategic Studies Institute of the U.S. Army War College
  • Abstract: This monograph analyzes the current political tensions between the United States and Turkey and suggests ways to manage them. The two countries have been strategic allies since at least the end of World War II—Turkey became a North Atlantic Treaty Organization member and participated with its military forces in the Korea War, and during the Cold War protected NATO’s southern flank against Soviet communism, and Turkey’s military and intelligence services maintained close relationships with their Western and Israeli counterparts. These relationships were not without problems, due mostly to differences over minority and civil rights in Turkey and over Turkey’s invasion of Cyprus in 1973 and continued tensions with Greece. The special relationship with the United States was put to the final test after the Islamic conservative populist political party, Justice and Development, and its current leader, Recep Tayyip Erdogan, came to power in 2002. Turkey opposed the US invasion of Iraq in 2003 and the NATO-backed regime change in Libya in 2011. Most recently, Turkey has had strained relations with Cyprus, Greece, and Israel—all key US allies—and has alienated the US Congress and select NATO members further by its October 2019 invasion of Syria against Kurdish forces aligned with the US military against the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria, all against a background of a military rapprochement with Russia. This monograph highlights differences between US agencies concerning Turkey and ways to reconcile them, and offers several policy recommendations for new directions.
  • Topic: NATO, Politics, History, Military Strategy, Bilateral Relations, Armed Forces
  • Political Geography: Turkey, Middle East, North America, United States of America
  • Author: Soner Cagaptay
  • Publication Date: 03-2020
  • Content Type: Special Report
  • Institution: The Washington Institute for Near East Policy
  • Abstract: Turkey, Russia, and Washington have compelling reasons to welcome a new ceasefire agreement, however imperfect, but they still need to address the longer-term dangers posed by the Assad regime’s murderously maximalist strategy. Recent fighting between Turkish and Syrian regime forces in Idlib province has seemingly wiped away the last vestiges of the September 2018 Sochi agreement, brokered by Russian president Vladimir Putin as a way of pausing hostilities and dividing control over the country’s last rebel-held province. Beginning last December, renewed Russian and Syrian attacks against civilians sent a million residents fleeing toward the Turkish border, creating another humanitarian disaster. Then, on February 27, thirty-three Turkish soldiers were killed when their unit was attacked in Idlib—Ankara’s largest single-day loss in Syria thus far. Turkey initially blamed Bashar al-Assad for the deaths, but eyes soon turned to his Russian patron as the more likely culprit, elevating tensions between Ankara and Moscow to a level not seen since Turkish forces shot down a Russian plane in November 2015. Meanwhile, the Turkish military and its local partner forces launched a string of attacks against the Syrian regime and its Iranian-backed militia allies. On March 5, President Recep Tayyip Erdogan will meet with Putin in Moscow to discuss these rising tensions. If the two leaders reach another ceasefire deal, will it last any longer than the short-lived Sochi agreement? More important, what effect might it have on the latest refugee crisis threatening to wash over Turkey and Europe?
  • Topic: Foreign Policy, Diplomacy, Treaties and Agreements, Syrian War, Negotiation
  • Political Geography: Russia, Turkey, Middle East, Syria, United States of America, Idlib
  • Author: Karol Wasilewski
  • Publication Date: 04-2020
  • Content Type: Special Report
  • Institution: The Polish Institute of International Affairs
  • Abstract: Turkey has sent aid to fight the COVID-19 pandemic to more than 20 countries. Although the gesture has a humanitarian dimension, it is also calculated to achieve political and economic benefits in the future. The challenge to these plans is the dynamics of the pandemic in Turkey, which may force the authorities to focus on the internal situation.
  • Topic: Foreign Policy, Diplomacy, Humanitarian Aid, Coronavirus, Pandemic
  • Political Geography: Turkey, Middle East
  • Author: Karol Wasilewski
  • Publication Date: 04-2020
  • Content Type: Special Report
  • Institution: The Polish Institute of International Affairs
  • Abstract: The agreement signed on 5 March between Russia and Turkey has halted the offensive by the Syrian army on Idlib and led to a new division of influence in the province. Both Turkey and Russia are using the truce to strengthen their military presence in this territory. The coronavirus pandemic may delay the resumption of fighting in Idlib, giving the EU time to prepare for a renewed escalation and attempts by Turkey to instrumentally use an exodus of Syrian refugees to exert pressure on the Union.
  • Topic: Foreign Policy, Military Strategy, Syrian War, Coronavirus
  • Political Geography: Russia, Turkey, Middle East, Syria, Idlib
  • Author: Bastien Revel
  • Publication Date: 07-2020
  • Content Type: Special Report
  • Institution: Atlantic Council
  • Abstract: Since 2014, Turkey has not only hosted the world’s largest refugee population but has also modeled a best practice for the global refugee policy discussion. Turkey’s experience on the key issues such as jobs and employment should be examined as lessons for both refugee hosting countries and donor countries alike. The country has provided Syrians under Temporary Protection the right to access work permits and formal employment. Facilitating self-reliance for such a large number of refugees’ households remains a challenging task, even in the medium to long-term. This is especially the case in a context where increasing levels of unemployment in Turkey compounded by the socio-economic impact of the COVID-19 pandemic have posed a serious challenge to job creation and increased competition for available opportunities. Many Syrians living in Turkey experiencing partial or complete loss of income while incurring higher expenses, which is compounded for most households by a lack of savings. Addressing these challenges requires to draw lessons learnt at both policy and operational level to effectively support access to livelihoods opportunities. This notably involves fostering greater engagement and partnership with the private sector, on the one hand, and exploring innovative solutions such as e-work and online livelihoods opportunities on the other. The COVID-19 pandemic is proving to be an important test on the government’s and their international partners’ relevance and flexibility and their ability to quickly step up efforts in that direction. In this context, UNDP Turkey—a longstanding development partner and the co-lead of the Refugee and Resilience Response Plan (3RP)—joined hands with the Atlantic Council’s program on Turkey—”Atlantic Council IN TURKEY”—to explore policy options to foster socioeconomic inclusion among Syrians under Temporary Protection. Building on the experience and expertise of both organizations, our joint policy report : “Turkey’s Refugee Resilience: Expanding and Improving Solutions for the Economic Inclusion of Syrians in Turkey” aims at outlining pragmatic and innovative options to facilitate refugees’ access to decent employment so as to contribute to our common objective to #leavenoonebehind.
  • Topic: Migration, Science and Technology, United Nations, Women, Refugees, Economic growth, Youth, Conflict, Syrian War, Crisis Management, Resilience
  • Political Geography: Europe, Eurasia, Turkey, Middle East, Syria
  • Author: Brandon Friedman, Joshua Krasna, Uzi Rabi, Michael Milshtein, Arik Rudnitzky, Liora Hendelman-Baavur, Joel D. Parker, Cohen Yanarocak, Hay Eytan, Michael Barak, Adam Hoffman
  • Publication Date: 05-2020
  • Content Type: Special Report
  • Institution: Moshe Dayan Center for Middle Eastern and African Studies
  • Abstract: This collection of essays, published by Konrad Adenauer Stiftung in collaboration with the Moshe Dayan Center (MDC), focuses on how states and societies absorbed the coronavirus shock as the first wave spread through the Middle East, from February through April 2020. It offers a critical examination of how several different Middle East countries have coped with the crisis. This publication is not intended to be comprehensive or definitive, but rather representative and preliminary. Each of these essays draw on some combination of official government data, traditional local and international media, as well as social media, to provide a provisional picture of the interplay between state and society in the initial response to the crisis.
  • Topic: Civil Society, Health Care Policy, Economy, Crisis Management, Sunni, Jihad, Coronavirus, COVID-19
  • Political Geography: Iran, Turkey, Middle East, Israel, Palestine, Egypt, Jordan, Gulf Cooperation Council, Gulf Nations
  • Author: Ulaş Bayraktar
  • Publication Date: 01-2020
  • Content Type: Special Report
  • Institution: Turkish Economic and Social Studies Foundation (TESEV)
  • Abstract: This report has been produced in the framework of the Empowering Civil Society for a More Democratic Local Governance Project funded by the scope of Republic of Turkey and European Union supported Partnerships and Networks Grant Program. TESEV is the lead, Şişli Municipality and Association of Union of Citizen Assemblies are the co-applicants, and the Checks and Balances Network is the associate of the project. The transition from the classical management approach to the governance approach, in which private sector and non-governmental organisations take on roles in determining public policies, has been the dominant discourse of politics for more than a quarter century. Instead of a hierarchical and monolithic bureaucratic process, this approach envisions a management triangle that engages other stakeholders. However, these governance principles have not been fully put into practice in Turkey and those that have been implemented have not yielded the expected results. The present study aims to test these statements at the level of local governments and politics. Its purpose is also to open up a discussion based on the findings of interviews and roundtables conducted in ten cities in Turkey and of a comprehensive survey administered to a nationally representative sample of civil society organisations.
  • Topic: Civil Society, Non-Governmental Organization, Governance, Democracy, Urban
  • Political Geography: Turkey, Middle East
  • Author: Michael M. Gunter
  • Publication Date: 12-2019
  • Content Type: Special Report
  • Institution: Georgetown Journal of International Affairs
  • Abstract: In the Kurdistan National Congress (KNK) headquarters in Brussels, one may be surprised to find that the co-chair rule governing the activities of the congress requires joint male and female leaders to share the office. As inefficient as such a dual head might seem, it sets the stage for gender equality. Overall, the duties of both men and women in the Kurdish movement leave no time for marriage or other traditional gender roles. This is particularly true of the Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK) and its related organizations, such as the Syrian Kurdish Democratic Union Party/Peoples Defense Units (PYD/YPG).
  • Topic: Gender Issues, Government, Politics, Women
  • Political Geography: Iraq, Turkey, Syria, Kurdistan, Brussels
  • Author: Joost Jongerden
  • Publication Date: 11-2019
  • Content Type: Special Report
  • Institution: Georgetown Journal of International Affairs
  • Abstract: While Trump always advocated disengagement from Syria, Turkish mainstream opinion and political leadership have never accepted Kurdish self-rule of territory on its Syrian border, which Turkey treats as an existential threat and dismisses with the trope of “terrorism.” Thus, Turkey’s military intervention should hardly be surprising. Indeed, not only is the assault an upscaled version of last year’s intervention and occupation of Afrin—a pocket in the western part of northern Syria—but it also fits a wider pattern of Turkish military aggression. Looking back over the past four years, we see Turkey repeatedly waging war for a “strong” state construction and regional power development.
  • Topic: War, Conflict, Recep Tayyip Erdoğan, State Building
  • Political Geography: Turkey, Middle East, Syria, Kurdistan
  • Author: International Crisis Group
  • Publication Date: 11-2019
  • Content Type: Special Report
  • Institution: International Crisis Group
  • Abstract: A tumultuous month in north-eastern Syria has left a tense standoff among the regime, Turkey and the YPG, mediated by Russia and, to some degree, still the U.S. All parties should respect the ceasefire as the regime and YPG negotiate more stable long-term arrangements. What’s new? The U.S. withdrawal announcement and subsequent Turkish incursion in north-eastern Syria shattered an awkward but fairly stable stalemate that had persisted for several years. A Russian-brokered ceasefire and partial reversal of the U.S. withdrawal have restored the impasse, but in far more fragile form. Why does it matter? The ceasefire leaves the biggest question unanswered: who will govern and police the north east? As the Syrian regime, Turkey and the People’s Protection Units (YPG) all stake potentially irreconcilable claims, and the U.S. stays put at the area’s oil fields, the emerging dispensation is highly volatile. What should be done? All sides should respect the ceasefire. The U.S. should protect its Kurdish and Arab partners in the Syrian Democratic Forces and prioritise stability in the north east in discussions with Russia and Turkey. The YPG should reassess its exclusive reliance on U.S. protection and pursue mutually beneficial arrangements with Damascus.
  • Topic: Syrian War, Negotiation, Crisis Management, YPG
  • Political Geography: Russia, Turkey, Middle East, Syria, United States of America
  • Author: International Crisis Group
  • Publication Date: 07-2019
  • Content Type: Special Report
  • Institution: International Crisis Group
  • Abstract: The U.S. decision to leave troops in north-eastern Syria has bought the area time but not lasting stability. Washington should press its Kurdish YPG allies to loosen their PKK ties – lest Ankara intervene – and stop obstructing their autonomy talks with Damascus. What’s new? After President Donald Trump announced a full U.S. withdrawal from Syria, his administration decided to leave a residual force there. All parties – the U.S., Turkey, the Syrian regime, Russia and the PKK-affiliated People’s Protection Units (YPG) that control the north east – are adjusting their stance to the resulting uncertainty. Why does it matter? The withdrawal reprieve provides an opportunity to prevent a violent free-for-all in the north east. Had U.S. troops left precipitously, Damascus might have tried to recover the territory and Ankara to exploit the vacuum to destroy the YPG. A resurgent Islamic State could have filled the void. What should be done? Washington should use its remaining influence to address Turkish concerns about the PKK’s role in the north east while protecting the YPG; and Moscow should help the YPG and Damascus reach agreement on the north east’s gradual reintegration into the Syrian state on the basis of decentralised governance.
  • Topic: Islamic State, Syrian War, Autonomy, YPG
  • Political Geography: Turkey, Middle East, Syria, North America, United States of America
  • Author: Burak Akçapar
  • Publication Date: 03-2019
  • Content Type: Special Report
  • Institution: Center on International Cooperation
  • Abstract: Since the launch of the Mediation for Peace initiative by Turkey and Finland in 2010, there has been an upsurge of activity at the United Nations (UN) and several regional organizations to promote mediation as a conflict resolution method. The UN General Assembly, the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE), and the Organization of Islamic Cooperation (OIC) have set out to develop mediation norms, procedures, and capacities. The assets and motivations of international actors, including foremost nation states, to provide mediation services as part of their foreign policy have been widely studied. However, the actual role played by specific leading nations in the promotion of mediation at international forums lacks a framework of analysis. This essay aims to fill this gap by employing the concept of “policy entrepreneurship” to explain the role of individual actors in transforming the politics, norms, and capacities that pertain to mediation. In this regard, the article discusses Turkey’s activities in the field of mediation and their transformative outcomes in a bid to test the proposed framework. It concludes that as the only country that co-chairs the friends of mediation groups simultaneously in the UN, the OSCE and the OIC, the distinguishing contribution of Turkey as a policy entrepreneur lies in its efforts to feed and shape the normative basis and capacities of international peace mediation efforts.
  • Topic: International Relations, International Affairs
  • Political Geography: Turkey
  • Author: Michał Wojnarowicz
  • Publication Date: 11-2019
  • Content Type: Special Report
  • Institution: The Polish Institute of International Affairs
  • Abstract: The significance of the Eastern Mediterranean for Israel has increased in the last decade, an outcome of interlocking factors associated with the civil war in Syria, the deterioration of relations with Turkey, and discoveries of new gas fields. The effectiveness of Israeli policy, especially in energy issues, depends on strengthening relations with the states of the region, such as Egypt or Cyprus. Hence, regional cooperation will deepen, which may have a positive impact on Israel-EU relations.
  • Topic: International Relations, Foreign Policy, Energy Policy, Regional Cooperation, European Union
  • Political Geography: Europe, Turkey, Middle East, Israel, Palestine, Syria, Egypt, Cyprus, Mediterranean
  • Author: Zeynep Gülru Göker
  • Publication Date: 07-2019
  • Content Type: Special Report
  • Institution: Turkish Economic and Social Studies Foundation (TESEV)
  • Abstract: A recent study published by TESEV shows that science and research is one of the areas with the lowest female participation in high level decision making.1 Among all 201 universities in Turkey, only 9% of the rectors, 10% of the vice rectors and 21% of the deans are women; and again, in Turkey, countrywide, 31% of the professors are women and 69% are men.2 This numerical inequality, as well as being a sign for a lot of other problems, is just the visible or easier-to-see tip of the iceberg. To talk about the obstacles women face in academia and the gender inequality in a wider sense, one must examine all written and non-written rules, practices and norms in every area of academic life, and establishing equality requires transformation in structural, institutional and individual levels. In this report, I will be talking about some of the obstacles women face climbing the career steps in academia and participating in high level decision making and the steps that have been taken and can be taken to ensure gender equality in academic life.
  • Topic: Education, Gender Issues, Women, Inequality
  • Political Geography: Turkey, Middle East
  • Author: Itır Akdoğan
  • Publication Date: 04-2019
  • Content Type: Special Report
  • Institution: Turkish Economic and Social Studies Foundation (TESEV)
  • Abstract: In this report, we enquire into the issue of gender equality by investigating different sectors at once to offer recommendations for improvement. In this project, which is supported by the Swedish Consulate General in İstanbul, we first examine, in light of data gathered and disseminated by European Institute for Gender Equality (EIGE), the percentage of women high-level decision makers in Turkey’s politics, public administration, local government, civil society organizations, social partners, business, media, judiciary and education/science/research. We compare these rates in their historical transformation and with the rates of European Union countries, thus inspecting them in their wider quantitative context. Next, we conduct in-depth interviews with women (if not present, men) high-level decision makers in these areas to carry out a qualitative assessment of women’s participation in Turkey.
  • Topic: Civil Society, Gender Issues, Politics, Women, Inequality
  • Political Geography: Turkey, Middle East, European Union
  • Publication Date: 10-2019
  • Content Type: Special Report
  • Institution: World Politics Review
  • Abstract: What does victory on President Bashar al-Assad’s brutal terms look like? How has the rise and fall of the Islamic State changed Syria’s political map? How will U.S. President Trump’s decision to withdraw U.S. troops from northeastern Syria and the subsequent Turkish invasion of the area change the situation?And what about reconstruction, let alone reconciliation? This WPR report provides a comprehensive look at those questions and several others that will determine what’s to come in Syria, with impacts far beyond the Middle East.
  • Topic: Conflict Resolution, Civil War, Proxy War, Armed Conflict
  • Political Geography: Russia, United States, Turkey, Middle East, Syria
  • Author: Lauren Mooney
  • Publication Date: 07-2018
  • Content Type: Special Report
  • Institution: Georgetown Journal of International Affairs
  • Abstract: Autocrats are making a comeback. Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan’s recent reelection, and the preceding repression of journalists and dissenters, is a prime example of this resurgence and sheds light on the playbook that many aspiring autocrats follow today. Erdoğan and other autocratic leaders voted into power through democratic means are part of a new breed of dictators—ones who swiftly dismantle the democratic system of checks and balances and the separation of powers designed precisely to prevent tyranny. The resulting system is an electoral autocracy—a system that retains the vestiges of democracy, but looks and acts like a traditional dictatorship. And this democratic erosion is ascending in prevalence—from 2000 to 2010, it accounted for 40 percent of all democratic failures. Personalist rule—a distinct mold of autocracy in which power is concentrated in the hands of one individual, sometimes referred to as strongman leaders—is also on the rise. Today, 40 percent of all autocracies are ruled by strongmen.
  • Topic: Foreign Policy, Authoritarianism, Democracy, Recep Tayyip Erdoğan
  • Political Geography: Turkey, Middle East
  • Author: Amanda Sloat
  • Publication Date: 02-2018
  • Content Type: Special Report
  • Institution: The Brookings Institution
  • Abstract: Policymakers in the United States and European Union are struggling with how to manage their relations with Turkey. What makes the country such a conundrum is that its problematic leadership faces real threats. Turkey is confronting challenges from the aftermath of the July 2016 coup attempt and the destabilizing effects of the Syrian war. Yet the country’s president is growing more authoritarian, using virulent anti-Western rhetoric, and making foreign policy choices contrary to the interests of the trans-Atlantic alliance. The policy goal is navigating this gray zone today to preserve the possibility of better relations in the future.
  • Topic: International Relations, International Affairs
  • Political Geography: Turkey
  • Author: Valeria Talbot
  • Publication Date: 04-2018
  • Content Type: Special Report
  • Institution: Italian Institute for International Political Studies (ISPI)
  • Abstract: Over the last few years, Turkey seems to have embraced the East again. Ankara’s closer relations with Eurasian countries go hand in hand with the international trend to move eastwards, towards the ever-growing and most dynamic region in the world. They are also the result of an increasing differentiation of Turkey’s foreign relations, driven by strategic, economic and energy interests. Stronger ties with the Eurasian countries, i.e. Russia and China, are also the litmus test for the ups and downs in relations with the Washington and Brussels. While Ankara still retains strong ties with the West, it is laying the groundwork to further widen its interests to the East. This report aims to analyse the multi-faceted aspects of Ankara’s Eurasian shift, highlighting domestic drivers of Turkey’s “Eurasianism”, the interests at stake, the areas of cooperation and competition, and last but not least the implications for the EU.
  • Topic: International Affairs, Geopolitics
  • Political Geography: Turkey
  • Author: Bürge Elvan Erginli
  • Publication Date: 03-2018
  • Content Type: Special Report
  • Institution: Turkish Economic and Social Studies Foundation (TESEV)
  • Abstract: The project titled “Analyzing and Mapping Services for Children and Family in Istanbul District Municipalities” aims to produce a comprehensive inventory of social services for children and family provided by district municipalities and to develop policy proposals for improving the geographic distribution and qualities of these services within a framework of the socio-economic differentiation of Istanbul districts. This Bernard van Leer Foundation supported project has been carried out by the Turkish Economic and Social Studies Foundation (TESEV). There has been collaboration with the Kadir Has University Istanbul Studies Center and the Union of Marmara Municipalities at various stages of the project. This report summarizes the stages of the studies carried out within the scope of the project and discusses the importance and use areas of the interactive website, which is an output of the project, from the perspective of both the municipalities and of other users. After the presentation of the findings and recommendations, the “Stratification of Neighborhoods with respect to Age and Mean Real Estate Values” maps and the “Municipality Services for Children and Family” data acquired through the project will be presented separately for each district.
  • Topic: Governance, Children, Public Policy, Urban, Services
  • Political Geography: Turkey, Middle East
  • Author: Reuben Silverman
  • Publication Date: 10-2017
  • Content Type: Special Report
  • Institution: Georgetown Journal of International Affairs
  • Abstract: Since Turkey experienced a failed coup attempt a year ago, hardly a week goes by without news of new firings, suspensions, detentions, and arrests. By the end of June 2017, over 138,000 government employees had been removed from their jobs and over 110,000 citizens had been detained—with nearly half of these detentions leading to formal arrests. Numbers of this size are daunting. To put them in perspective and to give some sense of how the post-coup purges have affected institutions and lives in Turkey, consider the case of TÜBİTAK.
  • Topic: Science and Technology, Democracy, Economy, Recep Tayyip Erdoğan, Coup
  • Political Geography: Turkey, Middle East
  • Author: Bilal Bağış, Çağlar Yurtseven
  • Publication Date: 05-2017
  • Content Type: Special Report
  • Institution: Center for Strategic Research (CSR)
  • Abstract: This paper aims to analyze potential future areas of greater cooperation between Turkey and the other OIC member economies. It then provides some specific policy recommendations. In particular, the paper aims to contribute to economic policymaking efforts in terms of the potential future areas of increased cooperation. Broadly speaking, the Muslim world has immense savings-holding accumulated over the past few decades. Human and physical capital potentials are extremely high. Yet, there are also huge economic disparities and extremely diverse demographic dynamics. This paper is built on the idea that a crucial strategy to boost economic development and social prosperity is an intense economic, financial and strategic integraton of the OIC members. In particular, countries with common historical, cultural and even religious backgrounds have much to gain from such specific collaboration efforts. In that line, this paper deals with opportunities and challenges regarding the strategic position of Turkey. It focuses on sectors in which Turkey has a comparative advantage within the OIC league. It further analyzes the reasons Turkey and the other OIC economies must cooperate and build stronger economic ties. The paper suggests that such a modern economic cooperation or a strategic union that is strengthened by historical, social and cultural roots is both inevitable and to the benefit of all parties.
  • Topic: International Relations, International Affairs
  • Political Geography: Turkey
  • Author: Aaron Stein
  • Publication Date: 06-2017
  • Content Type: Special Report
  • Institution: Atlantic Council
  • Abstract: This report examines Turkish foreign and energy policy toward Russia, Iran, and Iraq. It is divided into three case studies in which the lessons learned from past Turkish decision making might help chart likely courses of actions vis-à-vis Ankara’s future energy relationship with all three countries. The case studies also consider potential impacts on American interests in these three countries along with bilateral US-Turkish relations.
  • Topic: International Affairs
  • Political Geography: Turkey
  • Publication Date: 08-2017
  • Content Type: Special Report
  • Institution: Future for Advanced Research and Studies (FARAS)
  • Abstract: Turkey and Russia recently announced that their talks about the delivery of the Russian S-400 surface-to-air missile defense system to Ankara were now at a nal stage. That is a sign that a key element of the deal, estimated at USD 2.5 billion, has already been achieved. According to statements delivered by Sergei Chemezov, the head of Russia’s Rostec state corporation, in Moscow one week before the MAKS-2017 air-show, the two countries resolved technical issues regarding the con- tract of the four missile interceptor batteries, with only administrative issues remaining. His statement indicates that the serious steps have been already taken towards implement- ing what can be described as a done deal.
  • Topic: International Relations, International Security, International Affairs
  • Political Geography: Russia, Turkey
  • Publication Date: 08-2017
  • Content Type: Special Report
  • Institution: Future for Advanced Research and Studies (FARAS)
  • Abstract: Turkey has recently launched vigorous e orts to increase its domestic oil and natural gas produc- tion to meet its domestic demands. The ongoing problem of reliance on energy imports to meet the majority of its increasing demand has be- come a key determinant in Turkey’s foreign pol- icy. It is even driving the country’s push towards convergence with the world’s biggest two gas ex- porters, especially Russia.
  • Topic: International Relations, Global Political Economy
  • Political Geography: Turkey
  • Publication Date: 08-2017
  • Content Type: Special Report
  • Institution: Future for Advanced Research and Studies (FARAS)
  • Abstract: Turkey and Iran appear to be bent on upgrading political and security coordination over regional developments of common and special interest. This was evidenced by Iranian Chief of Staff General Muhammad Bagheri’s three-day vis- it to Turkey on August 15, 2017. This visit indicates that a “convergence of necessity” is headlining relations between the two regional powers despite a number of pending issues between them.
  • Topic: International Relations, International Security
  • Political Geography: Iran, Turkey
  • Author: Ulaş Bayraktar
  • Publication Date: 09-2017
  • Content Type: Special Report
  • Institution: Turkish Economic and Social Studies Foundation (TESEV)
  • Abstract: Regulatory reforms are not sufficient to increase the representation of women, examination of sociological causes is essential to better comprehend the reasons behind the low ratio of women representation. This report explores the relation between women representation and services provided for women in all metropolitan municipalities in Turkey. Both the gender roles and governance processes need to be analyzed together to understand this relationship. Furthermore, the quality of representation and services are examined in terms of gender awareness. While the findings of fieldwork in Aydın, Gaziantep, İstanbul, Konya and Ordu, and a detailed desk research of 11 cities identify the problems regarding gender awareness, they aim to provide concrete policy recommendations for future implementations.
  • Topic: Gender Issues, Governance, Reform, Inequality, Representation, Urban, Services
  • Political Geography: Turkey, Middle East
  • Author: Bayram Balci, Juliette Tolay
  • Publication Date: 12-2016
  • Content Type: Special Report
  • Institution: Centre d'Etudes et de Recherches Internationales
  • Abstract: While the issue of Syrian refugees has led an increasing number of countries to work on curbing arrivals, one country, Turkey, hosts almost half of these refugees. Yet, far from imposing restrictions, Turkey has distinguished itself for its open border policy and large-scale humanitarian contribution. Turkey’s generosity alone is not sufficient to understand this asylum policy put in place specifically for Syrians. There are indeed a number of political factors that indicate a certain level of instrumentalisation of this issue. In particular, Turkey’s benevolent attitude can be explained by Turkey’s early opposition to Assad in the Syrian conflict and its wish to play a role in the post-conflict reconstruction of Syria, as well as by its willingness to extract material and symbolic benefits from the European Union. But the refugee crisis also matters at the level of domestic politics, where different political parties (in power or in the opposition) seem to have used the refugee issue opportunistically, at the expense of a climate favorable to Syrians’ healthy integration in Turkey.
  • Topic: Globalization, Migration, Nationalism, Religion, Terrorism, War, International Security, Diaspora, Peacekeeping, Refugees, Syrian War, Regional Integration, Transnational Actors
  • Political Geography: Russia, Turkey, Middle East, Balkans, Syria
  • Author: Rochelle A. Davis, Fowzia Abdullahi Abukar, Emma Murphy
  • Publication Date: 10-2016
  • Content Type: Special Report
  • Institution: Center for Contemporary Arab Studies
  • Abstract: Since 2010, Professor Rochelle Davis has conducted research among the refugee communities in Jordan, Lebanon, and Turkey, working with MAAS Alum Abbie Taylor. With 60 million people counted as refugees or internally displaced, we are currently witnessing the largest global forced displacement since World War II. These displaced millions are primarily fleeing war, conflict, and persecution, but a host of other factors also contribute to the unstable conditions they face in their home countries: forced conscription; lack of access to health care, jobs, and education; drought and environmental degradation. More than half come from the Middle East, Central Asia, and the Horn of Africa. Despite the news of migrants arriving daily in Europe, the overwhelming majority of those displaced remain in or near their home countries.
  • Topic: Migration, United Nations, Refugees, Islamic State, Research, Displacement, Conflict
  • Political Geography: Turkey, Middle East, Palestine, Lebanon, Syria, Jordan, Somalia
  • Author: Will Todman, Mohammad AlAhmad, Dana Dairani
  • Publication Date: 10-2016
  • Content Type: Special Report
  • Institution: Center for Contemporary Arab Studies
  • Abstract: On April 22, 2015, CCAS Visiting Lecturer Dr. Mohammad AlAmad and his family left their home and lives in Syria behind. “Human smugglers drove us to the Turkish border,” says AlAhmad, “and then my wife and I carried our two young children, walking through barbed wire and muddy water into Turkey. We were full of trepidation, fear, and the pain of being displaced.” Though AlAhmad left Syria because he had been accepted to participate in the Institute of International Education’s Scholar Rescue Fund, which provides support for threatened scholars and places them with visiting appointments at partner academic institutions, he did not yet know his family’s ultimate destination. Once in Turkey, AlAhmad learned that his appointment would be at Georgetown, starting in August.
  • Topic: Authoritarianism, Refugees, Islamic State, Arab Spring, Syrian War, Literature, Revolution, Higher Education
  • Political Geography: Turkey, Middle East, Syria, North America, United States of America, Raqqa
  • Author: Noga Malkin
  • Publication Date: 10-2016
  • Content Type: Special Report
  • Institution: Center for Contemporary Arab Studies
  • Abstract: In the city of Mardin, the Tower of Babel cliché holds particular relevance. The old city—a beautiful array of historic stone houses stacked on a mountain slope in southeast Turkey—is located at the northern edge of Mesopotamia, once the land of Babylon. More than geography, the linguistic panorama of the area evokes the Genesis Babel story, the myth used to explain the variation of human tongues. Mardin is a microcosm of the Ottoman Empire’s ethnic, religious, linguistic and cultural diversity, largely eroded by nationalism’s drive for homogenization. A large Kurdish population lives in Mardin, holding on to their mother tongues despite decades-long Turkish “assimilation” policies. A sizable Arab population lives here too, separated from Arabs in Syria and Iraq after the fall of the Ottoman Empire. Linguists classify their language as “Mesopotamian Arabic,” related to bygone Iraqi dialects. Most Mardinites grow up speaking at least two—sometimes three—languages, learning either Kurdish or Arabic at home, the other on the streets, and Turkish at school. Further adding to the linguistic diversity, there remain several hundred neo-Aramaic speaking Assyrians and even fewer Armenians who once made up the majority of the city’s population; despite their now meager numbers, they attract tourists who come for the locally produced Assyrian wine and traditional Armenian and Assyrian silver crafts.
  • Topic: Refugees, Research, Linguistics, Language, Kurds, Arabic
  • Political Geography: Turkey, Middle East
  • Author: Mesut Özcan
  • Publication Date: 09-2016
  • Content Type: Special Report
  • Institution: Center for Strategic Research (CSR)
  • Abstract: As the Acting Chairman of the Center for Strategic Research (SAM), I am pleased to present our 2016 Annual Report. SAM’s primary objective is to conduct research on foreign policy and related issues, develop alternative perspectives, provide new insights and make policy recommendations. SAM has risen to a significant peak in our Ministry’s policy making process, and has created more influence than what was ever expected. Each year, it continues to move beyond its accomplishments of the previous year. On this occasion, I would like to express my heartfelt thanks to H.E. Mevlüt Çavuşoğlu, the Minister of Foreign Affairs of Turkey, for his valuable support and to the SAM staff for their contributions.
  • Topic: International Affairs
  • Political Geography: Turkey
  • Author: Shahrokh Fardoust
  • Publication Date: 06-2016
  • Content Type: Special Report
  • Institution: Middle East Institute (MEI)
  • Abstract: The region has incurred huge economic and social losses from poor economic management and conflicts requiring massive military outlays. A policy shift is needed to deploy its substantial human, natural, and financial assets more efficiently through adopting economic and social policies that lead to more rapid and inclusive economic growth in the Middle East and North Africa. The four most powerful players in the region—Saudi Arabia, Egypt, Iran, and Turkey—need to spearhead regional political and economic stabilization to address the root problems. Major regional infrastructure projects in energy, water, and transport are needed to better integrate their economies and expand intra-regional and world-wide trade. This policy paper argues that the major regional players should each follow a coherent long-term development strategy requiring four prongs plus cooperation: Reduce regional tensions and end conflicts through diplomacy and by recognizing that the current approaches are impeding investment and economic growth. Undertake significant economic and institutional reforms at home to remove binding constraints on growth, revitalize the private sector, improve financial access by small and medium-sized businesses, and improve the quality of education. Focus on well-targeted policies and structural reforms that would lead to significant reductions in youth employment and increased female labor force participation; and introduce cuts in military expenditures as regional tensions subside, and reallocate public investment savings to clean energy and infrastructure investments. Increase inter- and intra-regional cooperation and trade, initiate regional projects in partnership with the private sector in areas such as tourism, air and ground transport, regional energy and water, regional health and education, and research hubs. To support these initiatives, a regional development and reconstruction program supported by a 'mini-Marshall Plan' is urgently needed.
  • Topic: Economics, Energy Policy, Infrastructure, Reform, Regional Integration
  • Political Geography: Iran, Turkey, Middle East, Saudi Arabia, Egypt
  • Author: Anthony H. Cordesman
  • Publication Date: 08-2016
  • Content Type: Special Report
  • Institution: Middle East Institute (MEI)
  • Abstract: This Policy Paper is part of The Middle East Institute's Regional Cooperation Series. Throughout 2016, MEI will be releasing several policy papers by renowned scholars and experts exploring possibilities to foster regional cooperation across an array of sectors. The purpose is to highlight the myriad benefits and opportunities associated with regional cooperation, and the high costs of the continued business-as-usual model of competition and intense rivalry. It is all too easy to develop ambitious plans for regional security cooperation. In practice, however, almost all real world security cooperation is dependent on the different priorities states give to various threats, the willingness of given regimes to act, the resources they develop and have available, and the level of interoperability between their forces. Actual security cooperation in the MENA region has long been limited, occurred between changing mixes of individual countries rather than on a regional basis, and always lagged behind the rhetoric. Better cooperation on this level could evolve in the face of forces such as Iran’s military efforts, a powerful new Islamist extremist threat, or the outcomes to the fighting in Libya, Iraq, Syria, and Yemen. However, there is little reason to assume, given regional trends, that the prospects for regional cooperation or cooperation between states will improve in the near future, and bilateral relations with external powers, principally the United States, are likely to continue to play a more critical role in the future.
  • Topic: Security, Foreign Policy, Regional Cooperation, Terrorism, Military Affairs
  • Political Geography: Iran, Turkey, Middle East, United States of America, Gulf Nations
  • Author: Ulaş Bayraktar
  • Publication Date: 12-2016
  • Content Type: Special Report
  • Institution: Turkish Economic and Social Studies Foundation (TESEV)
  • Abstract: The idea of sustainable development has been transformed into a concrete program under 17 headings within the United Nations Global Goals. According to the Sustainable Development Goals Index (SDG) prepared within this framework, Turkey ranks 48th among 149 countries with a score of 66.1. In the fulfillment of sustainable development goals, participatory city governments play a major role and new opportunities have emerged. Citizen participation can be achieved through a range of methods and scopes, such as information, consultation, inclusion, cooperation, and empowerment, and Internet technologies open up considerable opportunities for these, although preexisting structural and cultural problems that precede these mechanisms endure. This report argues that the participatory practices inspired by the idea of the commons could make a significant contribution to making these participatory practices more functional.
  • Topic: Development, Governance, Sustainable Development Goals, Urban
  • Political Geography: Turkey, Middle East, United Nations
  • Author: Hasan Kirmanoğlu, K. İpek Miscioğlu
  • Publication Date: 12-2016
  • Content Type: Special Report
  • Institution: Turkish Economic and Social Studies Foundation (TESEV)
  • Abstract: Assessing public perceptions on corruption proves to be an important indicator and tool for corruption monitoring. In this report, results of public perception surveys on corruption in Turkey, conducted by Infakto for TESEV first in 2014 (February-March) and later in 2016 (February), are analyzed shedding light onto the current state of mind of the society.
  • Topic: Corruption, Government, Accountability, Transparency
  • Political Geography: Turkey, Middle East
  • Author: Hasan Kirmanoğlu, K. İpek Miscioğlu
  • Publication Date: 12-2016
  • Content Type: Special Report
  • Institution: Turkish Economic and Social Studies Foundation (TESEV)
  • Abstract: SELDI network have proposed to prepare a hidden economy overview to contribute to understanding the hidden economy and tracing its links with corruption that are significant for both anti-corruption practices and increasing welfare in Southeastern Europe (SEE) countries. Anti-corruption policies alone are unlikely to produce wide societal support, unless they are imbedded in economic reform and increase in prosperity. Therefore, a broadening of the anti-corruption debate from sheer law enforcement towards more economic grounded rationale, such as addressing the nexus between corruption and hidden economy, is needed.
  • Topic: Corruption, Law Enforcement, Economy, Business , Tax Systems
  • Political Geography: Europe, Turkey, Middle East
  • Author: Esra Gürakar, H. Ceren Zeytinoğlu, K. İpek Miscioğlu, R. Evren Aydoğan
  • Publication Date: 12-2016
  • Content Type: Special Report
  • Institution: Turkish Economic and Social Studies Foundation (TESEV)
  • Abstract: The insights gained from the research and advocacy efforts of the first phase of SELDI put forward that energy is one of the most susceptible sectors to corruption in all nine SELDI partner countries. Turkey differs from the rest of the SELDI countries in terms of energy sector and state-owned enterprise (SOE) sizes, dynamics, and recent debates.
  • Topic: Corruption, Energy Policy, Natural Resources, State, Accountability, Transparency
  • Political Geography: Turkey, Middle East
  • Author: Ross Harrison
  • Publication Date: 05-2015
  • Content Type: Special Report
  • Institution: Middle East Institute (MEI)
  • Abstract: In this MEI Policy Paper, Ross Harrison asserts that a new regional order is emerging out of the conflicts of the Middle East. The relationships among the pillars of this order--Egypt, Saudi Arabia, Turkey, and Iran--are crucial, as they will largely determine "whether the future of the Middle East will be a continuation of the current chaos and destruction or a more positive transition toward stability and prosperity." Harrison argues that global powers must concentrate on creating conditions conducive to cooperation among the pillars.
  • Topic: Foreign Policy, Diplomacy, Geopolitics, Political stability
  • Political Geography: Iran, Turkey, Middle East, Saudi Arabia, Egypt
  • Publication Date: 11-2015
  • Content Type: Special Report
  • Institution: Turkish Economic and Social Studies Foundation (TESEV)
  • Abstract: Turkish Economic and Social Studies Foundation – TESEV and Friedrich Naumann Foundation have organized, in collaboration with the Mersin Chamber of Commerce and Industry a conference titled “Migrant Management of Syrians in Turkey in the Framework of the EU Migration Policy” on October 20th, 2015 in Mersin. The opening remarks were made by Burhanettin Kocamaz, the Mayor of the Mersin Metropolitan Mucipality; Şerafettin Aşut, the Chairman of the Mersin Chamber of Commerce and Industry; and Prof. Dr. Aydın Uğur the Chairman of the Executive Board of TESEV. During three panels entitled as Migrant management in Turkey in the framework of the EU migration policy, Management of Syrian migrants in Turkey, and Being a Syrian migrant in Turkey, public authorities, academics, and Syrians have discussed the challenges and policy recommendations to improve Syrians’ lives and migrant management in Turkey.
  • Topic: Migration, Refugee Issues, Refugee Crisis, Syrian War
  • Political Geography: Turkey, Middle East, Syria
  • Author: Bürge Elvan Erginli, Gamze Nur Çelik, Koray Özdil, Seda Akço Bilen
  • Publication Date: 11-2015
  • Content Type: Special Report
  • Institution: Turkish Economic and Social Studies Foundation (TESEV)
  • Abstract: The report “Local Recommendations for Access to Justice in Turkey” was developed under the project Enhancing Civic Participation and Confidence Building in the Judicial Reform Process and run in partnership with the Turkish Economic and Social Studies Foundation (TESEV) and Turkije Instituut, based in Leiden, Netherlands. The main objectives of the project are to identify, at a local level, the problems that prevent citizens in Turkey from accessing justice in judicial processes, to support local actors serving in the field of justice and law in turning identified problems into significant policy recommendations, and thus, to develop local recommendations for judicial reform.
  • Topic: Environment, Law, Courts, Justice
  • Political Geography: Turkey, Middle East, Netherlands
  • Author: Aybars Görgülü, Mehmet Ünlü, Samuel Doveri Vesterbye, Zerrin Cengiz
  • Publication Date: 11-2015
  • Content Type: Special Report
  • Institution: Turkish Economic and Social Studies Foundation (TESEV)
  • Abstract: Full membership to the European Union (EU) has been a major foreign policy aspiration for any government leading Turkey in the past three decades. Accordingly, Turkey has been a candidate for EU membership since 1999 and accession negotiations started in 2005. Despite this positive momentum, Turkey is pretty far from full membership perspective as of mid-2015. A decade after the start of the accession negotiations, both sides seem quite busy with their internal problems and the official negotiation process is left into limbo. Although the current political climate does not offer an optimistic look, Turkey’s full membership aspirations are still present. It is clear that Turkey’s membership is different from any previous accession especially due to the size and the demography of the country. However, it should be noted that Turkey deserves a fair treatment and evaluation from the Union if the membership criteria are fully met. Here we face the question of how to tackle socio-cultural prejudice and discrimination with regards to Turkey’s accession process.
  • Topic: Foreign Policy, European Union, Discrimination
  • Political Geography: Europe, Turkey, Middle East, European Union
  • Author: Berkay Mandıracı
  • Publication Date: 03-2015
  • Content Type: Special Report
  • Institution: Turkish Economic and Social Studies Foundation (TESEV)
  • Abstract: Penitentiaries and penal policies have been one of the many areas subjected to changes in the context of the judicial reform taking place in Turkey over the last several years. Officials have been inspired to develop new policies in this field by a number of factors: the rise in the number of inmates and the resulting capacity problem; the inefficacy of outdated municipal prisons; and the need to support the resocialization of inmates through new penal policies. Efforts to increase the resocializing impact of the penal system in Turkey and the mentality transformation aiming at overcoming the historical baggage the penal system carries in Turkey are positive. However, these have not yet produced satisfactory results. This is why human rights violations in penitentiaries in Turkey are still continuing. This report argues that the general aim of the penal regime should be based on ‘resocialization’. Therefore, individuals after going through all stages of the penal process and after facing their crime, should be given the opportunity to fully participate in society again. With this perspective the report assesses the current penal reform process in Turkey and puts emphasis on the need for a holistic penal regime that focuses on resocialization of offenders in all penal stages and applies international human rights standards.
  • Topic: Human Rights, Prisons/Penal Systems, Reform, Criminal Justice, Justice
  • Political Geography: Turkey, Middle East
  • Author: Zerrin Cengiz, Pelin Yenigün Dilek, Ezgican Özdemir, Hande Özhabeş, R. Bülent Tarhan, Ayşe Üstünel Yırcalı, H. Ceren Zeytinoğlu
  • Publication Date: 02-2015
  • Content Type: Special Report
  • Institution: Turkish Economic and Social Studies Foundation (TESEV)
  • Abstract: he Corruption Assessment Report for Turkey is the product of the research conducted by TESEV’s Good Governance program under the Southeast European Leadership for Development and Integrity (SELDI) initiative. This report documents the agenda of the first phase of the SELDI partnership that spans 2012 through 2014. Along with presenting evidence on the degree of corruption in Turkey, the report analyzes the current legal setting and the effects of corruption on the economy. It emphasizes the importance of a free judicial system, the role of civil society, and the benefits of international collaboration in fighting corruption. The report also offers possible solutions to fighting corruption, focusing on the elements that make corruption commonplace.
  • Topic: Civil Society, Corruption, Accountability, Transparency
  • Political Geography: Turkey, Middle East
  • Author: Daniel Khachatryan
  • Publication Date: 01-2015
  • Content Type: Special Report
  • Institution: Turkish Economic and Social Studies Foundation (TESEV)
  • Abstract: Daniel Khachatryan is a Hrant Dink Foundation fellow at the Turkish Economic and Social Studies Foundation (TESEV) within the framework of the Support to the Armenia-Turkey Normalisation Process Programme financed by the European Union. Khachatryan’s academic background includes studies at Yerevan State University, University of Oslo and Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy, Tufts University. In this article, Khachatryan dwells upon the possible steps to be taken by the EU towars the South Caucasus in order to define its role in the region by focusing on the recent developments in Azerbaijan, Armenia and Georgia. Daniel Khachatryan, Avrupa Birliği tarafından finanse edilen ve Hrant Dink Vakfı’nın yürütmekte olduğu “Ermenistan-Türkiye Normalleşme Süreci Destek Programı” kapsamında bursiyer olarak TESEV’de çalışmaktadır. Erivan Devlet Üniversitesi, Oslo Üniversitesi ve Tufts Üniversitesi’nde eğitimini tamamlamış olan Khachatryan bu makalesinde Azerbaycan, Ermenistan ve Gürcistan’daki gelişmelere odaklanarak Avrupa Birliği’nin Güney Kafkasya’daki yeri ve rolünü tanımlamak için atması gereken muhtemel adımlara ve mekanizmalara değinmektedir. Makale yalnızca İngilizce olarak yayınlanmıştır.
  • Topic: Foreign Policy, Regional Cooperation, Bilateral Relations, Territorial Disputes, European Union, Economy
  • Political Geography: Europe, Turkey, Middle East, Armenia, Azerbaijan, Georgia, South Caucasus
  • Author: Nur Kırmızıdağ
  • Publication Date: 01-2015
  • Content Type: Special Report
  • Institution: Turkish Economic and Social Studies Foundation (TESEV)
  • Abstract: Research on Public Trust in the Police in Turkey, is based on survey data collected on a large-scale sample representative of Turkey. The report provides insights on perceptions of the public with regard to effectiveness/performance, legitimacy of the police and thereby lays bare the level of trust different segments in Turkey attribute to the police. The report utilizes sophisticated statistical methods and, for the first time in Turkey comprehensive scientific models on police trust are being applied giving the opportunity to comparatively analyze the results. Thus the following questions are examined in the report: What is the level of public trust towards police? What are the main components of police trust in Turkey? In how far do police legitimacy and police effectiveness/performance affect police trust in Turkey? What are the factors influencing public’s perception of police legitimacy and effectiveness? How does public’s perception of police legitimacy and effectiveness affect cooperation with and compliance to the police? How does this perception affect public’s toleration of police misconduct? How does public perception of police legitimacy, effectiveness and trust change with regard to different demographic factors in Turkey (political affiliation, ethnic background, religious affinity etc.)?
  • Topic: Security, Law Enforcement, Democracy, Legitimacy, Statistics, Police
  • Political Geography: Turkey, Middle East
  • Author: Oytun Orhan
  • Publication Date: 01-2015
  • Content Type: Special Report
  • Institution: Turkish Economic and Social Studies Foundation (TESEV)
  • Abstract: TESEV Foreign Policy Program and ORSAM (Center for Middle Eastern Strategic Studies) in order to understand the effects of Syrian asylum seekers to Turkey, visited Adana, Osmaniye, Hatay, Kilis, Gaziantep, Şanlıurfa, Mersin and Kahramanmaraş respectively during four different field study trips in three months. They held series of meetings with municipalities, professional organizations, chambers of trade and industry, civil society organizations, opinion leaders, locals and Syrians. This report has been prepared in the light of the observations and data gained from these field studies.
  • Topic: Civil Society, Migration, Refugees, Refugee Crisis, Syrian War, Public Policy, Services
  • Political Geography: Turkey, Middle East, Syria
  • Author: Elise Massicard
  • Publication Date: 07-2014
  • Content Type: Special Report
  • Institution: Centre d'Etudes et de Recherches Internationales
  • Abstract: The Justice and Development Party (JDP) has been in power in Turkey since 2002, consolidating its electoral support among an array of social groups ranging from broad appeal among the popular classes to business leaders and a growing middle class. The success of the JDP is a consequence of the manner in which the party inserted itself into certain economic and social sectors. While the party has internalized the principles of reducing the public sphere and outsourcing to the private sector, it has not restricted the reach of government intervention. On the contrary, it has become increasingly involved in certain sectors, including social policy and housing. It has managed this through an indirect approach that relies on intermediaries and private allies such as the businesses and associations that is has encouraged. In this way, the JDP has developed and systematized modes of redistribution that involve the participation of conservative businessmen who benefit from their proximity to the decision-makers, charitable organizations, and underprivileged social groups. These public policies have reconfigured different social sectors in a way that has strengthened the Party’s influence.
  • Topic: Civil Society, Sociology, Governance, Regulation, Political Science, Networks
  • Political Geography: Europe, Turkey, Middle East, Asia, Balkans
  • Author: Aybars Görgülü, Mensur Akgün, Sabiha Senyücel Gündoğar
  • Publication Date: 12-2014
  • Content Type: Special Report
  • Institution: Turkish Economic and Social Studies Foundation (TESEV)
  • Abstract: Setting out with the premise that the current situation of Israel-Turkey relations is detrimental to all parties in the region, TESEV Foreign Policy Program conducted a series of studies in order to dwell upon alternative areas of cooperation and discuss the current state of relations. To this end, two roundtable meetings were organized: the first one was held on 2 October 2013 in Istanbul and the second was organized in Jerusalem on 22 December 2013. A trip to Israel was organized between 6 and 8 July 2014 to complement these roundtables, during which a significant number of meetings were held with authorities form the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Israel, as well as journalists and various experts. This report touches upon the historical background of Israel-Turkey relations and the potential areas for Turkish-Israeli cooperation.
  • Topic: Diplomacy, Regional Cooperation, History, Bilateral Relations, Crisis Management
  • Political Geography: Turkey, Middle East, Israel, Palestine
  • Author: Etyen Mahçupyan
  • Publication Date: 12-2014
  • Content Type: Special Report
  • Institution: Turkish Economic and Social Studies Foundation (TESEV)
  • Abstract: This report focuses on the rising prosperity of the Islamic middle class since 2002 and the diversification of the religiosity concept within a pluralist structure in Turkey. Written by TESEV consultant Etyen Mahcupyan in February 2014, this report explains the importance of the rising middle class and the new generation of Anatolian entrepreneurs for the political and sociological transformation of Turkey. The findings of the surveys and focus groups are evaluated under four categories: 1) Political Institutions and Rights, 2) Family, Women, Sexuality, 3) Group Affiliations, Individualism, Tolerance, 4) Openions about Market Economy, Class Differences and Western World.
  • Topic: Islam, Religion, Women, Economy, Political structure, Class, Family, Sexuality
  • Political Geography: Turkey, Middle East
  • Author: Ognian Shentov, Ruslan Stefanov, Maria Todorova
  • Publication Date: 11-2014
  • Content Type: Special Report
  • Institution: Turkish Economic and Social Studies Foundation (TESEV)
  • Abstract: Corruption in Southeast Europe has been in the news, in the focus of public debate, and on the policy agenda of national and international institutions so often and for so long that its scrutiny hardly needs to be justified. It is precisely because it has proven to be such an intractable issue that innovative approaches to its understanding – and hence its reduction – are warranted. The EU accession prospects for the countries in the region – though distant – provide an enabling framework for action but it is local stakeholders, and in particular civil society who can bring about sustained progress in anti-corruption. The Southeast Europe Leadership for Development and Integrity (SELDI) has made the in-depth diagnosing and understanding of corruption and governance gaps in the region one of its main priorities, as a requisite condition for its advocacy of knowledge-driven anticorruption policies. This SELDI report fits in the development and implementation framework of the emerging regional anticorruption policy and infrastructure as exemplified by the SEE2020 Strategy’s Governance Pillar run by the Regional Anti-Corruption Initiative.
  • Topic: Civil Society, Corruption, Governance, Accountability, Transparency
  • Political Geography: Europe, Turkey, Eastern Europe, Kosovo, Serbia, Bulgaria, Macedonia, Albania, Croatia, Montenegro, Bosnia and Herzegovina
  • Publication Date: 11-2014
  • Content Type: Special Report
  • Institution: Turkish Economic and Social Studies Foundation (TESEV)
  • Abstract: Being the result of collaboration within SELDI, this report is innovative in both its method and its process. It is the result of the application of a system developed by SELDI in the early 2000s for the assessment of both corruption and anticorruption, tailored to the social and institutional environment of Southeast Europe. This executive summary reviews Turkey’s findings and provides a number of recommendations to achieve further progress in limiting corruption. Güneydoğu Avrupa’daki yolsuzluk sorunu, üzerine sıkça haber yapılan, toplumsal tartışmaların odağında yer etmiş olan, hem ulusal hem de uluslararası kurumların sürekli ve uzun süredir siyasa gündeminde bulunan, sorunsallığı kanıksanmış bir meseledir. Yolsuzluğun bu kadar yaygın ve kolay kontrol edilemeyen bir sorun olmasından dolayı, meseleyi anlamaya ve dolayısı ile de azaltmaya yönelik yenilikçi yaklaşımlara gerek duyulmaktadır. Avrupa Birliği’ne katılım beklentisi, bölge ülkelerinin harekete geçmesi için gereken hukuki çerçeveyi sağlıyor olsa da, yolsuzlukla mücadelede sürdürülebilir bir gelişimin sağlanmasında yerel siyasetteki menfaat sahiplerinin ve özellikle de sivil toplumun oynayacağı rol öne çıkmaktadır. Kalkınma ve Entegrasyon için Güneydoğu Avrupa Liderliği (SELDI) ağı, bilgi temelli yolsuzlukla mücadele amacı kapsamında, yolsuzluk ile bölgedeki yönetimsel eksiklikleri tanımlama ve anlamaya yönelik araştırmalara öncelik vermiştir. Elinizdeki bu SELDI raporu, Bölgesel Yolsuzluk ile Mücadele Girişimi tarafından yürütülen SEE (Güneydoğu Avrupa) 2020 Stratejisi Yönetim Prensibi ile örneklenen bölgesel yolsuzluk ile mücadele siyasetinin kalkınma ve uygulama konusu çerçevesinde hazırlanmıştır.
  • Topic: Corruption, Accountability, Transparency
  • Political Geography: Europe, Turkey, Middle East, Eastern Europe
  • Author: Hande Özhabeş
  • Publication Date: 05-2014
  • Content Type: Special Report
  • Institution: Turkish Economic and Social Studies Foundation (TESEV)
  • Abstract: A number of amendments for criminal law have been instituted in Turkey in recent years within the framework of the judicial reform process that especially were geared towards the realization of the fair trial principle. Between 2011 and 2013, four groups of legal amendments named “Judicial Reform Packages” were passed. These brought about important improvements regarding fair trial, freedom of speech, personal liberty and security. The TESEV Democratization Program published a report evaluating the effect of these four judicial reform packages on rights and freedoms in September 2013. This brief report provides an evaluation of the amendment package instituted in March 2014 that included important changes vis-a-vis the specially empowered judicial system.
  • Topic: Democratization, Law, Reform, Criminal Justice, Justice
  • Political Geography: Turkey, Middle East
  • Author: Olgu Okumus
  • Publication Date: 01-2014
  • Content Type: Special Report
  • Institution: Turkish Economic and Social Studies Foundation (TESEV)
  • Abstract: Olgu Okumuş, a PhD candidate at SciencePo, deliberates on the issue of energy in Turkey due to Turkey’s aim of meeting its growing energy demand and being an energy transit hub. Okumuş discusses the advantages that the energy liberalization policies such as privatization and diversification of resources will bring to the country’s economy. In addition, she talks about the two main challenges of lowering energy pricing and carbon emission and put forth solutions for overcoming these challenges.
  • Topic: Energy Policy, Privatization, Natural Resources, Governance, Economy, Trade Liberalization
  • Political Geography: Turkey, Middle East
  • Author: Fulya Memişoğlu
  • Publication Date: 01-2014
  • Content Type: Special Report
  • Institution: Turkish Economic and Social Studies Foundation (TESEV)
  • Abstract: Turkey, at the crossroads of Europe, Middle East and Asia, has confronted with the mounting pressure of mixed migration flows in recent decades. Among these, management of irregular migration flows is an issue of particular concern due to the complex interplay between its security, humanitarian and economic dimensions. In broad terms, irregular migration is the movement that takes place outside of the regulatory norms of the sending, transit and receiving countries. Because irregular migrants do not have the necessary authorization to enter, reside or work; the destination country treats their status as illegal. Triandafyllidou clarifies the distinction between illegality and irregularity by defining irregular migrant as ‘a migrant who at some point in his migration contravened the rules of entry or residence’ whereas illegal migration is ‘the act of entering in violation to national law and is confined to illegal border crossing (but not overstaying the terms of visas or residence) referring only a flow and not to stock of persons’.
  • Topic: Human Rights, Migration, Bilateral Relations, European Union
  • Political Geography: Europe, Turkey, Middle East
  • Author: R. Bülent Tarhan
  • Publication Date: 01-2014
  • Content Type: Special Report
  • Institution: Turkish Economic and Social Studies Foundation (TESEV)
  • Abstract: This comprehensive work has been prepared by Prime Minister’s Chief Inspector Bülent Tarhan and contains all related UN and OECD documents, government of Republic of Turkey’s fight against corruption action plans, decision and circulars of the prime ministry, national programme of Turkey related with undertaking of the EU Legal Acquis related provisions of the Turkish law, EU Progress reports, GRECO Turkey Reports, all anti-corruption laws and GNAT Corruption Investigation Commission Report as well as Mr.Tarhan’s article ‘Institutional Foundation of Anti-corruption’. Published by TEPAV (The Economic Policy Research Foundation of Turkey) this work is an extensive source of information to anyone who has been interested in this subject matter. In order to navigate easily in this 1040 page long document, you can click on the titles and sub-titles in the summary of contents. This work has only been published in Turkish.
  • Topic: Corruption, Law, European Union, Courts, Accountability, Transparency, Justice
  • Political Geography: Europe, Turkey, Middle East
  • Author: Mensur Akgün, Sabiha Senyücel Gündoğar
  • Publication Date: 01-2014
  • Content Type: Special Report
  • Institution: Turkish Economic and Social Studies Foundation (TESEV)
  • Abstract: The report entails the findings of the fifth annual survey conducted by TESEV Foreign Policy Programme in collaboration with KA Research between August 15- September 13, 2013. As in previous years, the public opinion survey reveals interesting insights into the recent Middle Eastern viewpoints, perceptions and expectations. 2800 Respondents from 16 countries (Egypt, Jordan, Lebanon, Palestine, Saudi Arabia, Syria, Tunisia, Yemen, Libya, Bahrain, Kuwait, United Arab Emirates, Qatar, Oman, Iraq and Iran) of the region reflect on Turkey’s role and regional challenges in the light of current happenings.
  • Topic: Foreign Policy, Politics, Regional Cooperation, Public Opinion
  • Political Geography: Iraq, Iran, Turkey, Middle East, Kuwait, Libya, Yemen, Palestine, Saudi Arabia, Lebanon, Syria, Egypt, Jordan, Bahrain, Qatar, Tunisia, Oman, United Arab Emirates
  • Author: Biriz Berksoy, Mehmet Uçum, Zeynep Başer, Zeynep Gönen
  • Publication Date: 12-2013
  • Content Type: Special Report
  • Institution: Turkish Economic and Social Studies Foundation (TESEV)
  • Abstract: “The Spirit of the Police Laws in Turkey: Legislative Discourses, Instruments and Mentality” is a discussion of the quality of policing in Turkey as is laid out by laws and the authority and powers given to the police. It aims to uncover the dynamics that extend or restrict police authorities through regulations. Looking at police laws in this manner unearths clues – albeit at the level of discourse – about the mentality of policing, the elements of the conceptualizations of “crime,” “criminal,” “order” and “security” within the police force, and the grounds that legitimize police authority. We hope that the report will lead to a more fruitful discussion of the limits of police powers and duties together with the problems of insufficient oversight and impunity.
  • Topic: Security, Law, Democracy, Criminal Justice, Police, Justice
  • Political Geography: Turkey, Middle East
  • Author: Hande Özhabeş, Naim Karakaya
  • Publication Date: 12-2013
  • Content Type: Special Report
  • Institution: Turkish Economic and Social Studies Foundation (TESEV)
  • Abstract: “Judicial Reform Packages: Evaluating Their Effect on Rights and Freedoms” authored by Naim Karakaya and Hande Özhabeş, is published as part of TESEV’s ongoing work on judicial reform. The report focuses on the four judicial reform packages released by AK Party government between 2011 and 2013. It analyses the Judicial Packages and evaluates them from the perspective of rights and freedoms, and focuses especially on freedom of expression, right to liberty and security, right to a fair trial as well as the execution system.
  • Topic: Security, Law, Reform, Freedom of Expression, Justice, Judiciary
  • Political Geography: Turkey, Middle East
  • Author: Gülçin Avşar
  • Publication Date: 11-2013
  • Content Type: Special Report
  • Institution: Turkish Economic and Social Studies Foundation (TESEV)
  • Abstract: The Ergenekon Trial has been one of the most important political developments in recent Turkish history. The trial helped uncover the ways in which some groups in the military establishment and their political and economic collaborators in civilian circles were intervening illegally in democratic politics. When the trial revealed that the suspects had ties to the Susurluk scandal and to organizations that had committed extrajudicial killings of Kurdish civilians in the 1990s —the Yüksekova Gang, the Gendarmerie Intelligence and Counter Terrorism organization, and the Special Forces Command—there were heightened expectations among the public that grave violations of human rights committed during the 1990s, particularly against the country’s Kurdish citizens, would be brought to light. Yet the prosecutors and panel of judges in charge of conducting the investigation phase of the trial ignored these expectations as they prepared the criminal complaint, instead focusing solely on the charge of “attempting to overthrow the government.” A report published by the TESEV Democratization Program in November 2013, presented the public with an analysis of information found in the Ergenekon case files regarding the grave violations of human rights during the 1990s. The present work, an abridged version of this report, uses the most noteworthy information on murders by unknown assailants from the case files. We seek to present a general analysis of the Ergenekon Trial’s importance in Turkey’s confrontation with its past, to highlight its unprecedented nature in Turkish criminal-justice history, and finally to present our own recommendations.
  • Topic: Crime, Law, Courts, Justice, Judiciary, Disappearance, Extrajudicial Killings
  • Political Geography: Turkey, Middle East
  • Author: Aycan Akdeniz
  • Publication Date: 10-2013
  • Content Type: Special Report
  • Institution: Turkish Economic and Social Studies Foundation (TESEV)
  • Abstract: This report is written by Aycan Akdeniz who is a political analyst at the Delegation of the European Union (EU) to Turkey. This report analyzes the “cautious optimism” elicited by the recent developments after a long period of stalemate in Turkey-EU relations. Written in a period after the opening of Chapter 22 through the lifting of the French veto and the publication of the 16. Progress Report, the report examines the effects of the euro crisis, the “Arab Spring”, the Cyprus Issue and the Gezi Park protests on the future of Turkey-EU relations and draws conclusions on what is needed to be done by both sides for a constructive re-engagement between Turkey and the EU. Bu çalışma, Avrupa Birliği(AB) Türkiye Delegasyonu’ndan Aycan Akdeniz tarafından hazırlanmıştır. Rapor Türkiye-AB ilişkilerinin tıkanma noktasına geldiği bir dönemin ardından son gelişmeler ışığında ortaya çıkan “temkinli iyimserlik” ortamını değerlendirmektedir. 22. Başlık’ın Fransa’nın vetosunu kaldırmasıyla açıldığı ve 16. İlerleme Raporu’nun yayımlandığı bir dönemde yazılan bu rapor euro krizi, “Arap Baharı”, Kıbrıs sorunu ve Gezi protestolarının Türkiye-AB ilişkileri ve ilişkilerinin geleceği üzerinde etkisini ve bu ilişkilerin güçlenmesi için tarafların ne yapması gerektiğini incelemektedir.
  • Topic: International Relations, European Union, Arab Spring, Protests
  • Political Geography: Europe, Turkey, Middle East, Cyprus
  • Author: Levent Köker
  • Publication Date: 10-2013
  • Content Type: Special Report
  • Institution: Turkish Economic and Social Studies Foundation (TESEV)
  • Abstract: “The Basic Principles and the Choice of Government System in the New Constitution,” authored by Levent Köker, is the fourth monitoring report published by TESEV under the umbrella of its constitution monitoring project, Turkey Constitution Watch (turkeyconstitutionwatch.org). The report offers a comparative analysis of the presidential and parliamentary system proposals that are discussed in the Constitutional Reconciliation Commission. It also deals with the basic principles (such as rights and freedoms, independence and impartiality of the judiciary, and local autonomy) that should form the basis of system discussions in Turkey.
  • Topic: Human Rights, Law, Constitution, Civil Rights, Justice, Judiciary
  • Political Geography: Turkey, Middle East
  • Publication Date: 07-2013
  • Content Type: Special Report
  • Institution: Turkish Economic and Social Studies Foundation (TESEV)
  • Abstract: The paper presents the results of three meetings co-organized by the Turkish Economic and Social Studies Foundation (TESEV) Foreign Policy Programme (FPP) and the The PeaceResearch Institute Oslo (PRIO) Cyprus Centre. The workshops, held in Tbilisi, Istanbul and the buffer zone in Nicosia, discussed the policies followed by the ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP) in the former imperial geography and noted current expectations from the Middle East, the Balkans, and the Caucasus.
  • Topic: International Relations, Foreign Policy, Geopolitics, Economy
  • Political Geography: Turkey, Middle East
  • Author: Biriz Berksoy
  • Publication Date: 05-2013
  • Content Type: Special Report
  • Institution: Turkish Economic and Social Studies Foundation (TESEV)
  • Abstract: “Military, Police and Intelligence in Turkey” is the fourth report of TESEV’s Security Sector and Democratic Oversight series and was authored by Istanbul University Professor Biriz Berksoy. The report puts forward persisting problems regarding accountability and civilian democratic oversight of the security institutions in Turkey; discusses the implications of these problems in light of recent developments, particularly regarding human rights violations; and highlights a series of legal, institutional and strategic reforms that should be undertaken to address the existing problems in this field.
  • Topic: Security, Human Rights, Intelligence, Military Affairs, Reform, Democracy, Police
  • Political Geography: Turkey, Middle East
  • Author: Ceren Sözeri, Dilek Kurban
  • Publication Date: 03-2013
  • Content Type: Special Report
  • Institution: Turkish Economic and Social Studies Foundation (TESEV)
  • Abstract: Research carried out in Turkey in the frame of the MEDIADEM project, which seeks to identify the policy processes, tools and instruments that can best support media freedom and independence in the country, showed that the media in Turkey has always been in a relationship of interdependence with political power. The state has maintained a tight grip over the press through political pressure and has successfully created a proponent media through practices of political favouritism and financial nepotism. The fear of state oppression, the absence of a culture of independent journalism and economic dependence on state support caused the media to align itself with political power, even after the end of single party rule and transition to multi-party democracy.
  • Topic: History, Democracy, Media, Journalism
  • Political Geography: Turkey, Middle East
  • Author: Etyen Mahçupyan, Mehmet Uçum, Özge Genç
  • Publication Date: 03-2013
  • Content Type: Special Report
  • Institution: Turkish Economic and Social Studies Foundation (TESEV)
  • Abstract: In our “Monitoring Report 3: What sort of a constitution are we heading towards?,” subtitled as “Analysis of Constitutional Scenarios,” the proposals of AK Party, BDP, CHP and MHP regarding the new constitution under the titles such as Legislation, Executive and Jurisdiction are compared. The report analyzes whether the proposals bring a reform, a revision or a repetition, and addresses the question of what type of a constitution will come out of these proposals if they are to be accepted.
  • Topic: Reform, Constitution, Citizenship, State
  • Political Geography: Turkey, Middle East
  • Author: Amr Darrag
  • Publication Date: 03-2013
  • Content Type: Special Report
  • Institution: Turkish Economic and Social Studies Foundation (TESEV)
  • Abstract: Dr. Amr Darrag is the member of the Executive Board and the Chairperson of the Foreign Relations Committee of the Freedom and Justice Party (FJP) in Egypt. In his article “On The New Vision for the Egyptian Foreign Policy After the Revolution” he shares his party’s visions for a prosperous and stabilized Egypt. As a member of the Party, Dr.Darrag provides a roadmap with main foreign policy objectives to achieve an imperative role in the international arena. The article also sheds light on the Egypt-Turkey partnership for their development in the economic and political platforms. Dr.Amr Darrag, Mısır’daki Özgürlük ve Adalet Partisi’nin yürütme kurulu üyesi ve partinin Dış İlişkiler Komitesi başkanıdır. “On the New Vision for the Egyptian Foreign Policy After the Revolution” başlıklı makalesinde kalkınmış ve istikrarlı bir Mısır için partisinin ortaya koyduğu vizyonu paylaşmaktadır. Aynı zamanda partinin bir üyesi olarak, uluslararası alanda önemli ve kalıcı bir aktör olmak yolunda izlenecek temel dış politika hedefleri için bir yol haritası sunmaktadır. Makale ekonomik ve siyasi platformlarda Mısır-Türkiye arasındaki ilişkilerin geliştirilmesi için de öneriler içermektedir. Makale yalnızca İngilizce olarak yayınlanmıştır.
  • Topic: Foreign Policy, Bilateral Relations, Arab Spring, Revolution
  • Political Geography: Turkey, Middle East, Egypt
  • Author: Onur Bayramoğlu
  • Publication Date: 01-2013
  • Content Type: Special Report
  • Institution: Turkish Economic and Social Studies Foundation (TESEV)
  • Abstract: One of the most critical areas of reform in Turkey’s recent history involves the judiciary, which has served to corroborate the tutelary regime. With a discourse emphasizing that the judiciary itself must also be bound by the “rule of law”, the Justice and Development Party (JDP) took a number of steps toward reforming the administration of supreme judiciary bodies, as well as the judiciary in general. The constitutional amendments brought to the ballot in the referendum of 12 September 2012 essentially represented an initiative to transform the judiciary. The amendments package was intended to equip the Constitutional Court and the High Council of Judges and Prosecutors (HSYK) with a more pluralist structure. This report titled “the High Council of Judges and Prosecutors in Turkey: Roundtable Discussion on its New Structure and Operations” is based on discussions of the roundtable meeting attended by representatives from judges and prosecutors professional associations such as YARSAV (The Association of Judges and Prosecutors) and Demokrat Yargı (Democratic Judiciary Association), which adopted divergent positions over the course of the referendum; one representative from HSYK, the direct addressee in the debate; and experts with diverse opinions. With the roundtable, we intended to generate direct discussion by experts and practitioners of the field in a small group affording sufficient time for speakers. As a result, we treated the current situation and practice through an insider’s perspective and in detail. This also provided a shared platform where parties coming from varying political positions exchanged opinions regarding both the HSYK and several contested aspects of the judiciary reform. The roundtable ensured that critiques were communicated to and discussed with the directly relevant parties through face-to-face conversations.
  • Topic: Democratization, Law, Rule of Law, Justice, Judiciary
  • Political Geography: Turkey, Middle East
  • Author: Bayram Balci
  • Publication Date: 11-2012
  • Content Type: Special Report
  • Institution: Centre d'Etudes et de Recherches Internationales
  • Abstract: For ideological and practical reasons the AKP government, in power since November 2002, has engaged in a policy of progressive integration of Turkey into the Muslim, and more particularly, the Arab world. This policy has been facilitated by the country’s booming economy and assertive foreign policy. Turkey, whose government embraced a political ideology similar to those, brought to power by the Arab Spring, benefitted greatly from the ideological effects of the Arab Spring. These benefits were enhanced by the fact that the political ideology of those brought to power by the « Arab Spring » was similar to that of the AKP. Turkey appeared to be becoming a model for the Arab world. However, the crisis in Syria, a country central to Turkey’s Arab policy, and the inability of the Turkish government to remain neutral has put an end to Turkey’s Arab dream. Turkish engagement in the Syrian crisis has caused deterioration in Turkey’s relations with a number of its neighbors and forced it to renew ties with its traditional western allies from whom it had hoped to distance itself in order to be an independent regional and international player.
  • Topic: International Relations, Politics, Arab Spring, Regional Integration
  • Political Geography: Turkey, Middle East, Syria
  • Author: Mensur Akgün, Sabiha Senyücel Gündoğar
  • Publication Date: 12-2012
  • Content Type: Special Report
  • Institution: Turkish Economic and Social Studies Foundation (TESEV)
  • Abstract: The report entails the findings of the fourth annual survey conducted by TESEV Foreign Policy Programme in collaboration with KA Research between August 3- 28, 2012. As in previous years, the public opinion survey reveals interesting insights into the recent Middle Eastern viewpoints, perceptions and expectations. 2800 Respondents from 16 countries of the region reflect on Turkey’s role and regional challenges in the light of current happenings.
  • Topic: Foreign Policy, Politics, Regional Cooperation, Public Opinion
  • Political Geography: Turkey, Middle East, Kuwait, Libya, Yemen, Palestine, Saudi Arabia, Lebanon, Syria, Egypt, Jordan, Bahrain, Qatar, Tunisia, Oman, UAE
  • Author: Saban Kardas
  • Publication Date: 12-2012
  • Content Type: Special Report
  • Institution: Turkish Economic and Social Studies Foundation (TESEV)
  • Abstract: In his article “Turkey and the Gulf Dialogue in the Middle East” Şaban Kardaş reflects on the enhancement of the Turkey- Gulf relationship, arguing that both sides have overlapping interests in deepening economic and trade connections as well as in achieving a more equitable settlement to regional disputes. To this end, Kardaş draws on the insights of the TESEV- Derasat workshop on 5 September 2012 where experts discussed the current regional environment, the diverging and converging views on regional issues, the implications of Turkey’s growing involvement in Gulf affairs and the policy options available to the sides. Şaban Kardaş, “Turkey and the Gulf Dialogue in the Middle East” adlı makalesinde Türkiye ve Körfez ülkeleri arasında gelişmekte olan ilişkileri ele alıyor ve taraflar arası iktisadi ve ticari bağların güçlenmesi ile bölgesel anlaşmazlıklarda çözüm sağlanabilmesi noktalarının her iki tarafın da yararına olduğunu belirtiyor.
  • Topic: International Relations, International Trade and Finance, Regional Cooperation, Economy, Negotiation
  • Political Geography: Turkey, Middle East, Gulf Nations
  • Author: Diba Nigar Göksel
  • Publication Date: 10-2012
  • Content Type: Special Report
  • Institution: Turkish Economic and Social Studies Foundation (TESEV)
  • Abstract: In her article “Turkey and Armenia Post –Protocols: Back to Square One?” Nigar Göksel provides the reader with a brief overview of the history of diplomatic relations between Turkey and Armenia. The article endeavours to shed light on the ways in which “the protocol framework” tried to stimulate a high-level diplomatic normalisation process between the two countries and further examines why this process broke down. As a potentially tricky period approaches, more clarity and communication is needed to create a conducive environment to move forward in the future. Only then will stumbling blocks, like the Nagorno-Karbakh conflict, be solvable. Nigar Göksel makalesinde Türkiye ve Ermenistan arası diplomatik ilişkilerin kısa bir tarihçesini okurla paylaşırken, geliştirilen “protokol çerçevesi” ile iki ülke arası normalleşme sürecine ışık tutuyor. Göksel bu sürecin neden uzun soluklu olamadığını araştırırken; siyasi çıkmazın aşılabilmesi, ileriye dönük somut adımlar atılması ve bölgesel anlaşmazlıkların (Dağlık –Karabağ sorunu gibi) çözülebilmesi adına, gelecek dönemde ülkeler arası açık politikalar izlenmesi ve doğrudan iletişim kurulması gerekliliğine dikkat çekiyor.
  • Topic: Diplomacy, Genocide, Bilateral Relations, Territorial Disputes, Conflict
  • Political Geography: Turkey, Middle East, Eastern Europe, Armenia
  • Author: Christalla Yakinthou, Rebecca Bryant
  • Publication Date: 08-2012
  • Content Type: Special Report
  • Institution: Turkish Economic and Social Studies Foundation (TESEV)
  • Abstract: This report contains the findings of TESEV Foreign Policy Program’s survey of the perception of Turkey in Cyprus. Conducted by Rebecca Bryant and Christalla Yakinthou, the survey aims to understand and represent Turkish and Greek Cypriot assessments of their respective relationships with Turkey today. The report uses a set of fifty extended interviews to present Cypriots’ anxieties, hopes, and fears regarding their relationships with Turkey and possibilities for the future. The report reveals some striking findings. While Turkish Cypriots demand sovereign equality from Turkey; Greek Cypriots are more concerned with the economic performance of Turkey and Greece, rather than the role of Turkey on the future of the island. Both sides think of Turkey’s military presence on the island as an issue and it is also widely believed that Turkey should adopt a more constructive attitude and take concrete steps towards a long-term solution. u rapor TESEV Dış Politika Programı’nın Kıbrıs’ta Türkiye algısını anlamaya yönelik çalışmasının detaylı sonuçlarını içermektedir. Rebecca Bryant ve Christalla Yakinthou tarafından yürütülen bu çalışma, Kıbrıslı Türk ve Rumların Türkiye ile olan ilişkilerini nasıl değerlendirdikleri üzerinde durmaktadır. Araştırma ada genelinde çeşitli kanaat önderleriyle yapılan elli derinlemesine mülakat aracılığıyla Kıbrıslıların Türkiye ile ilgili görüş ve beklentilerini ortaya koymaktadır.
  • Topic: Conflict Resolution, Foreign Policy, Sovereignty, Territorial Disputes, Economy
  • Political Geography: Turkey, Middle East, Greece, Cyprus, Mediterranean
  • Author: Ceren Sözeri, Dilek Kurban
  • Publication Date: 08-2012
  • Content Type: Special Report
  • Institution: Turkish Economic and Social Studies Foundation (TESEV)
  • Abstract: Media policy in Turkey has shaped the media-state relationship since the establishment of the first newspaper in the late Ottoman period. While regulations were often employed as an effective disciplinary tool against the press in processes of state formation and modernization, opponent journalists have constantly been suppressed by state and non-state actors who claimed to act in the name of ‘state interests.’ The lack of a strong pro-democracy social movement; the ideological conservatism of the judiciary; the institutional weakness of the parliament; and the lack of democracy within political parties render the government – and future governments – too powerful vis-à-vis the society and the media. On a positive note, however, there is a growing awareness on the need for social monitoring of the media. In the absence of a widely accepted and established self-regulatory framework, various nongovernmental organizations and activist groups started to watch the media in order to expand the culture of diversity and to reduce discrimination, racism and hate speech.
  • Topic: Democracy, Media, Freedom of Expression, Journalism, Judiciary
  • Political Geography: Turkey, Middle East
  • Author: Fulya Memişoğlu
  • Publication Date: 07-2012
  • Content Type: Special Report
  • Institution: Turkish Economic and Social Studies Foundation (TESEV)
  • Abstract: The article “Easing Mental Barriers in Turkey-Armenia Relations, written by Fulya Memisoglu from Cukurova University International Relations Department, hopes to shed light on the reconciliation and normalization process between Turkey and Armenia by focusing on the role and importance of intercultural exchange initiated by the civil society. Memisoğlu, provides the reader with an overview of the main themes addressed during the meetings in Adana, Yerevan and Istanbul organized in 2011 and 2012 by TESEV in collaboration with its local partners. As she argues, these meetings reveal that in addition to diplomatic efforts for normalization and reconciliation at state level, there is a crucial need to reach out to people and work on “people-to-people” relations between two countries in order to tackle perceptions of hostility and create intercultural dialogue. Çukurova Universitesi Uluslararasi İlişkiler Bölümü ögretim görevlisi Fulya Memişoğlu tarafından kaleme alınan bu makalede, Türkiye-Ermenistan ilişkilerinin normalleşme sürecinde, toplumlararası iletişimin sağlanmasında sivil toplumun sahip olduğu rol ve önem konu ediniliyor.
  • Topic: International Relations, Diplomacy, Bilateral Relations
  • Political Geography: Turkey, Middle East, Armenia
  • Author: Aybars Görgülü, Onnik Krikorian
  • Publication Date: 07-2012
  • Content Type: Special Report
  • Institution: Turkish Economic and Social Studies Foundation (TESEV)
  • Abstract: On March 2, 2012, Eurasia Partnership Foundation (EPF) and Turkish Economic Social Studies Foundation (TESEV) organized an international conference titled “Turkey’s South Caucasus Agenda: Roles of State and Non-State Actors” in Tbilisi, Georgia. The event brought together analysts, diplomats and decision makers from Turkey, Europe and the South Caucasus to discuss Turkey’s role in stabilizing the region both on the level of government engagement and civil society. This publication is the reflection of the commentary that was made by participants during the conference.
  • Topic: International Relations, Foreign Policy, Civil Society, Regional Cooperation
  • Political Geography: Europe, Turkey, Middle East, Georgia, South Caucasus
  • Author: Henri J. Barkey
  • Publication Date: 07-2012
  • Content Type: Special Report
  • Institution: Turkish Economic and Social Studies Foundation (TESEV)
  • Abstract: The Evolution of Turkish Foreing Policy in the Middle East is written by Henri J. barkey from Lehigh University. The article analysis Turkish foreign policy since the AK Party assumed power and reveals three distinct phases, especially in regard to the Middle East. Lehigh Üniversitesi’nden Henri J. Barkey’nin kaleme aldığı The Evolution of Turkish Foreing Policy in the Middle East Türkiye’nin AK Parti hükümeti dönemindeki dış politikasını üç ayrı evreye ayırarak analiz etmekte ve özellikle Ortadoğu’da izlediği siyasetin gelişimini değerlendirmektedir.
  • Topic: International Relations, Foreign Policy, Politics, Regional Cooperation
  • Political Geography: Iran, Malaysia, Turkey, Middle East, Saudi Arabia, Morocco, Tunisia
  • Author: Doğan Ertuğrul
  • Publication Date: 06-2012
  • Content Type: Special Report
  • Institution: Turkish Economic and Social Studies Foundation (TESEV)
  • Abstract: “A Test for Turkey’s Foreign Policy: The Syria Crisis “is written by the Star Newspaper columnist Doğan Ertuğrul. Ertuğrul, who has been working on Iran, northern Iraq and the Kurdish issue for over 10 years, has produced numerous research papers and articles concerning the political system in Iran, Iranian Kurds and other minorities as well as political groups in northern Iraq. The article provides an in-depth analysis of the situation in Syria since March 2011 and elaborates on Turkish and Iranian policies towards Syria. It further examines the competition between Tehran and Ankara along with the perception of Turkey in the region.
  • Topic: International Relations, Foreign Policy, Arab Spring, Syrian War
  • Political Geography: Iran, Turkey, Middle East, Syria
  • Author: Cengiz Çandar
  • Publication Date: 03-2012
  • Content Type: Special Report
  • Institution: Turkish Economic and Social Studies Foundation (TESEV)
  • Abstract: The democratic norms, introduced with globalization and embodied in the EU membership criteria, served as a leverage for Turkey like in many other countries. They enabled the society to gain a new insight in its own history and state and as a result the problems that had often been overlooked and swept under the carpet were inevitably included in the domain of politics. The issue, which is often referred to as the ‘Kurdish Question’ yet essentially expresses the refusal by the state to meet the existential and cultural demands of Turkish citizens with Kurdish identity, constitutes the biggest obstacle to democratization in terms of its scope and historical background. Accordingly, today, there is a widespread belief that democracy cannot become entrenched in society unless the ‘Kurdish Question’ is resolved. The TESEV Democratization Program has systematically addressed the ‘Kurdish Question’ in the recent years and brought it to the public attention. Three reports were prepared as a result of an extensive field work, where we attempted to clarify the demands of the politically diverse Kurdish people, the possible constitutional and legal responses to these demands and how these demands are perceived by other segments of the society. The collision of this process with the widening of the domain of politics in Turkey has led to the idea of seeking for ‘the resolution’ within the framework of a new constitution. On the other hand, there is a growing understanding that ‘the resolution’ has some aspects that go beyond the legal context. For establishing a future based on trust requires conclusively burying the past in the pages of history while also ensuring its visibility, which in turn implies a confrontation among different identities. Therefore, the resolution of the ‘Kurdish Question’ needs a democratic method and approach, whereby parties are able to develop an attitude that addresses the whole society and show consent to a policy that does not encumber the future. Yet, the reciprocal past and present violence between the state and the PKK makes it necessary to create a transparent medium for dialogue to realize potential solutions, and therefore to embark upon a journey towards a solution with no way back. This means ensuring that all members of the PKK, including Öcalan, gradually perceive themselves as a part of the political process. This period, in which we are on the verge of creating the new constitution and concurrently solving the ‘Kurdish Question’, is a vital one. This TESEV report analyses what type of a political infrastructure is needed to build a favorable environment for such a dialogue. The study conducted by Cengiz Çandar, one of the most competent observers of the issue, reveals how the building blocks for resolution can be placed in a realistic way and in consideration of the plurality within both sides. Our expectation is that this groundwork presented here will offer a meaningful contribution and roadmap both for the settlement of the ‘Kurdish Question’ and for the democratization process of Turkey …
  • Topic: Conflict Resolution, Non State Actors, Negotiation, Violence, Kurds
  • Political Geography: Turkey, Middle East, Kurdistan
  • Author: Mensur Akgün, Sabiha Senyücel Gündoğar
  • Publication Date: 02-2012
  • Content Type: Special Report
  • Institution: Turkish Economic and Social Studies Foundation (TESEV)
  • Abstract: This report contains the findings of TESEV Foreign Policy Programme’s third survey of the perception of Turkey in the Middle East. Conducted by KA Research in 16 countries between October 19th and December 15th, the survey questioned 2323 people by telephone or face to face. As in previous years, the survey contains striking results. Despite falls in some countries, Syria and Iran being the most significant, the general perception of Turkey in the region has not changed fundamentally. In fact of the countries that regional opinion was sought, Turkey has surpassed even Saudi Arabia into first place with 78% of the region having a favourable opinion of it. The conclusions are similar to those in previous years. However, there are some results relating to the ‘Arab Spring’ that should be noted here.
  • Topic: Foreign Policy, Politics, Regional Cooperation, Public Opinion
  • Political Geography: Turkey, Middle East, Libya, Palestine, Lebanon, Egypt, Jordan, Tunisia, Gulf Nations
  • Author: Ceren Sözeri, Dilek Kurban
  • Publication Date: 12-2011
  • Content Type: Special Report
  • Institution: Turkish Economic and Social Studies Foundation (TESEV)
  • Abstract: Media policy in Turkey has shaped the media-state relationship since the establishment of the first newspaper in the late Ottoman period. While regulations were often employed as an effective disciplinary tool against the press in processes of state formation and modernization, opponent journalists have constantly been suppressed by state and non-state actors who claimed to act in the name of ‘state interests’. The coup d’état in 1980 and the concomitant economic liberalisation changed the ownership structure of the media sector with the entry of new investors. Following the abolishment of state monopoly on broadcasting in the 1990s, big conglomerates expanding through vertical and horizontal mergers have dominated all fields of the media. The high concentrated market structure in the media was made possible due to the inadequacy of legal barriers to crossmergers, as well as the lack of measures that would prevent media conglomerates from participating in public tenders in other sectors of the economy. The shortcomings of the regulatory framework to promote press freedom and diversity in the media has encouraged big corporations to regard themselves as legitimate political actors that can bargain with the government. Media ownership was restructured following the economic crisis in 2001. Big media groups, which had investments in the financial and banking sectors, were particularly affected by the crisis; some being completely wiped out of the market, while others were seized by the state. Shortly after the Justice and Development Party (Adalet ve Kalkınma Partisi- AK Parti) came to power in 2002, the mainstream media was reconfigured ideologically as either ‘opponent’ or ‘proponent’ to the government. Notwithstanding the limited positive effects of the EU accession process on media freedom, there are dozens of ECtHR judgments regarding freedom of expression and freedom of the press waiting to be executed by the Turkish state. Journalists who are powerless vis-à-vis the owners and political power are particularly affected by the political polarisation in the media. The structural obstacles to unionization and the lack of solidarity in the profession lead to labour exploitation, low quality content and violations of media ethics. The lack of a strong pro-democracy social movement; the ideological conservatism of the judiciary; the institutional weakness of the parliament; and the lack of democracy within political parties render the government – and future governments – too powerful vis-à-vis the society and the media. On a positive note, however, there is a growing awareness on the need for social monitoring of the media. In the absence of a widely accepted and established selfregulatory framework, various non-governmental organizations and activist groups started to watch the media in order to expand the culture of diversity and to reduce discrimination, racism and hate speech. MEDIADEM is a European research project which seeks to understand and explain the factors that promote or conversely prevent the development of policies supporting free and independent media.
  • Topic: Democracy, Media, Freedom of Expression, Journalism
  • Political Geography: Turkey, Middle East, European Union
  • Author: Ömür Orhun
  • Publication Date: 09-2011
  • Content Type: Special Report
  • Institution: Turkish Economic and Social Studies Foundation (TESEV)
  • Abstract: In this article, Ömür Orhun suggests that the creation of a regional cooperation and “security process”in the Middle East, rather than an organization, would provide a framework of rules and procedures for sustained and focused dialogue, transparency and cooperation, in a range of issues that should cover security, socio-economic challenges, democratic governance and human rights. The “process” can function simultaneously on multiple layers: civil society/academia, track-two, and governmental. Each of these layers should aim to contribute to the achievement of agreed goals. The success of the process (and eventually of the organization to be worked out) can be defined as a reduction over time, and eventual elimination of conflicts, improvement of social and political conditions and development of the economic situation. A side implication no doubt will be improvement of human interaction.
  • Topic: International Relations, Security, Human Rights, Regional Cooperation
  • Political Geography: Turkey, Middle East
  • Author: Mete Hatay, Rebecca Bryant
  • Publication Date: 06-2011
  • Content Type: Special Report
  • Institution: Turkish Economic and Social Studies Foundation (TESEV)
  • Abstract: This paper was prepared by Mete Hatay and Rebecca Bryant. Mete Hatay is based in the North and has worked with TESEV for many years. Rebecca Bryant is an academic who has long worked on the Cyprus conflict.What they successfully achieve in their paper is articulating the Turkish Cypriot viewpoint regarding the negotiations, the property question and the relationship between Turkey and North Cyprus. Despite the seemingly countless barriers and setbacks, Hatay and Bryant also outline suggestions that can build confidence between the two communities so that step by step the Cyprus problem can get closer to being solved.
  • Topic: Sovereignty, Territorial Disputes, Conflict, Negotiation
  • Political Geography: Turkey, Middle East, Cyprus, Mediterranean
  • Author: Meliha Benli Altunisik
  • Publication Date: 06-2011
  • Content Type: Special Report
  • Institution: Turkish Economic and Social Studies Foundation (TESEV)
  • Abstract: TESEV’s public opinion surveys in the Arab world that were conducted in 2009 and 2010 demonstrated that Turkey’s attractiveness has been quite high in the region. This attractiveness is due to the perception of Turkish foreign policy; the view of Turkey’s political and economic transformation as a success story; and Turkey’s cultural products. These characteristics point to a possibility of Turkey’s soft power in the region. The question remains, however, how Turkey exercises its soft power, an issue that has become all the more relevant as a result of the Arab Spring. In this article, Meliha Benli Altunışık analyses the influence of Turkey’s “soft power” in the Arab World under “Turkey’s Attractiveness”, “Challenges”, and “The Arab Spring and Turkey” subtitles.
  • Topic: Foreign Policy, Regional Cooperation, Arab Spring, Soft Power
  • Political Geography: Turkey, Middle East, Arab Countries
  • Author: Aybars Görgülü, Enis Erdem Aydın, Mensur Akgün, Sabiha Senyücel Gündoğar
  • Publication Date: 06-2011
  • Content Type: Special Report
  • Institution: Turkish Economic and Social Studies Foundation (TESEV)
  • Abstract: This report contains the results of a survey conducted on 6-14th December 2010 by KA Research that has been evaluated by TESEV Foreign Policy Programme. Based on a sample size of 1,000, the survey aims to understand the perception of foreign policy in Turkey. A first of its kind for TESEV, the survey includes striking findings that may be of interest to decision-makers in Turkey and those following Turkey around the world. This report finds many results for the opinion on the foreign policy vision of Turkey concerning the Turkish government, the US government, the EU and the Middle East.
  • Topic: International Relations, Foreign Policy, Geopolitics
  • Political Geography: Turkey, Middle East, Cyprus, United States of America, European Union
  • Author: Paul Salem
  • Publication Date: 05-2011
  • Content Type: Special Report
  • Institution: Turkish Economic and Social Studies Foundation (TESEV)
  • Abstract: The author of this article, Paul Salem states that Turkey’s image in the Arab World (and Iran) became positive in past few years which was negative among the people of the Arab World (and Iran) throughout the 20th century. TESEV’s second survey of public opinion in the Arab world (and Iran) confirms this transformation. The positive opinion includes Turkey as a political, economic and social model; Turkey’s regional mediation and investment; and its popular culture. The TESEV survey shows that the people of the region are very positively inclined toward Turkey, and this implies that they would be favorable to a broader Turkish role that goes beyond confronting Israel, and toward helping the societies of the region move more steadily toward democratic change and economic development. Paul Salem concludes that as the people of the region rebel in favor of democratic change, Turkey certainly has even more potential and responsibility in the Arab World.
  • Topic: International Relations, Foreign Policy, Regional Cooperation, Public Opinion, Arab Spring
  • Political Geography: Turkey, Middle East, Arab Countries
  • Author: David Barchard, Matthew Duss
  • Publication Date: 05-2011
  • Content Type: Special Report
  • Institution: Turkish Economic and Social Studies Foundation (TESEV)
  • Abstract: In this article, Matthew Duss analyses the evolution of the US-Turkey relations since the Justice and Development Party (the AK Party) has come to the power in Turkish politics (in past 10 years) with regards to the perceptions of the American people and the American government. It is stated that the relationship has been developed better during the Obama Administration comparing with the Bush era. There are different opinions on the importance of Turkey in American National Policy. Among foreign policy analysts, however, the significance of Turkey’s foreign policy evolution is more clearly understood, though there is some disagreement over whether this evolution is a good or bad thing for U.S. interests. However, there is considerable agreement that the relationship will continue to be a very consequential one for the United States, and thus that U.S. policy should reflect this.
  • Topic: International Relations, Foreign Policy, Bilateral Relations
  • Political Geography: Turkey, Middle East, United States of America
  • Author: David Barchard, Gökçe Perçinoğlu, Jonathan Levack, Mensur Akgün, Sabiha Senyücel Gündoğar
  • Publication Date: 02-2011
  • Content Type: Special Report
  • Institution: Turkish Economic and Social Studies Foundation (TESEV)
  • Abstract: This study contains the results of the second survey conducted by KA Research Limited between August 25th and September 27th 2010 with my contribution and that of TESEV’s researchers. Again, the 2010 survey was conducted in the same seven Arab countries but, unlike 2009, it was also conducted in Iran. In total, 2,267 people were surveyed by telephone or face-to-face. These results show a statistically significant increase in positive opinion of Turkey. Although they are dealt with more thoroughly in the report, there are a few social and thus political findings that are different from the previous year.
  • Topic: International Relations, Foreign Policy, Regional Cooperation, Public Opinion
  • Political Geography: Turkey, Middle East, Palestine, Saudi Arabia, Lebanon, Syria, Egypt, Jordan
  • Author: Alexander Iskandaryan, Aybars Görgülü, David Barchard, Sergey Minasyan
  • Publication Date: 10-2010
  • Content Type: Special Report
  • Institution: Turkish Economic and Social Studies Foundation (TESEV)
  • Abstract: After unimaginable steps in recent years, Turkish-Armenian relations have reached a point where full diplomatic relations could be established and the land border between the two countries could be opened. However seven months on from the signing of the historic protocols in Zurich, the process has stalled. TESEV Foreign Policy Program and Caucasus Institute’s new report “Assessing the Rapprochement Process” attempts to analyse progress to this point, identify why the process has stalled and offers recommendations aimed at solving the current impasse. Working in a collaborative fashion, the authors from both organisations identified the following areas where progress can be made: The ratification process must continue. Momentum is fickle and letting the protocols sit and fester is in no one’s interest. Rapprochement is a two pronged process: one involves the technical normalisation of relations and the other is reconciliation between the two societies. Both are extremely important and require both states and society to play a significant and active role. The media in both Turkey and Armenia has a responsibility to create an atmosphere conducive to rapprochement. Unbiased, positive and accurate reporting is far more favourable than the existing sensationalism common on both sides of the border.
  • Topic: International Relations, Diplomacy, Regional Cooperation, Bilateral Relations
  • Political Geography: Turkey, Caucasus, Middle East, Armenia
  • Author: Meliha Benli Altunisik, Mustafa Ellabbad
  • Publication Date: 06-2010
  • Content Type: Special Report
  • Institution: Turkish Economic and Social Studies Foundation (TESEV)
  • Abstract: The main objective of this study is to uncover different views on Turkey among opinion makers and bureaucrats as well as among the public in the Arab world. To this aim, along with the aforementioned survey data, personal interviews were also conducted and incorporated into the publication. As the report makes clear, not only have Arab perspectives on Turkey become increasingly positive in recent years but also debate of Turkey in the Arab world has become more nuanced.
  • Topic: International Relations, Regional Cooperation, Public Opinion
  • Political Geography: Turkey, Middle East, Arab Countries
  • Author: Dilek Kurban, Yılmaz Ensaroğlu
  • Publication Date: 06-2010
  • Content Type: Special Report
  • Institution: Turkish Economic and Social Studies Foundation (TESEV)
  • Abstract: There is more to the dominance of “rule of law” or “supremacy of law” in a state than the mere availability of a constitution or laws, or the presence of judicial institutions. Indeed, it is a fact of history that even the bloodiest dictatorships had their idiosyncratic laws and courts. In addition, there are countless historical examples of tyrannical and oppressive policies being implemented through courts. Thus, in paying special attention to the matter, international human rights law emphasizes in the Universal Declaration of Human Rights that “…it is essential, if man is not to be compelled to have recourse, as a last resort, to rebellion against tyranny and oppression, that human rights should be protected by the rule of law.” Article 3 of the Statute of the Council of Europe follows suit: “Every member of the Council of Europe must accept the principles of the rule of law and of the enjoyment by all persons within its jurisdiction of human rights and fundamental freedoms…” Article 1 of the European Convention on Human Rights, in addition, states: “The High Contracting Parties shall secure to everyone within their jurisdiction the rights and freedoms defined in Section I of this Convention.” These and other instruments of law confer on the states substantial responsibilities for the protection of human rights. Of a state’s obligations in that regard, the most important include constitutional and legal recognition of citizens’ human rights, non-interference in individuals’ exercise of those rights as long as such exercise does not violate the freedoms of others, and protection of those rights against interventions by others. These obligations have also become sources and criteria for a state’s claim to legitimacy. In other words, states are now considered to be legitimate to the extent they recognize and protect human rights. As a matter of fact, the protection of states’ rights to sovereignty cannot hold its ground against human rights, thus no state can have recourse to the ‘non-intervention in domestic affairs’ discourse in the face of violations within that state’s borders. The judiciary is the most important mechanism that will check the compliance of government policies and practices with the law and protect citizens’ rights and freedoms. This is why all acts and transactions of the administration need to be subject to judicial review in a state where rule of law prevails. In short, the judiciary is the one and only power that will put the principle of the rule of law into practice. In order for the judiciary to serve that function, that is, to protect human rights, it is indispensable that constitutional and legal arrangements be compatible with human rights law. Put differently, implementing the principle of rule of law necessitates that the law should, instead of siding with the state, have an autonomous standing vis-à-vis the state. The law must maintain equal distance to the state and the citizen. Otherwise, it will not be able to serve its arbitral function between the two sides, and as a result, its legitimacy becomes contested. Considering Turkey in this light, one sees that the legal framework has adopted the ideology of creating a homogenous society and a modern nation, instead of securing all individuals’ rights. Founded as a modern state upon the remnants of the multi-religious, multilingual, and multiethnic Ottoman Empire, the Turkish Republic decided that it would not be possible for it to realize the plans to construct the new nation without denying room to the distinct identities. In line with the secularist and nationalist policies pursued as an outgrowth of this approach, the legal framework underwent a complete overhaul. It has become widely accepted today that Kurds were one of the primary targets of these policies. As a matter of fact, in addition to general legal and constitutional amendments necessary for a Turkey committed to human rights and the rule of law, a number of particular arrangements are also required for a lasting and democratic solution to the Kurdish Question. Constituting the main focus of this report, these arrangements can be broken down into two groups: constitutional and legal. Although the constitutional articles and legal provisions examined in detail and the regulations and statutes which occupy lesser space in the report might appear to have a general character and do not include the words “Kurd” or “Kurdish”, they are essentially instruments aiming to restrict Kurds’ fundamental rights and freedoms and practically causing indirect discrimination against the Kurds. It goes without saying that several administrative measures that do not necessitate any particular legal arrangements must also be taken to solve the Kurdish Question. Discussed as part of the debates on the ‘democratic initiative’, some of these measures include the restitution of names in Kurdish and other languages to places plastered with Turkish names, removal of nationalist slogans etched by the state onto mountain slopes in Turkey’s eastern and southeastern region, changing the militarist names given to schools in the same region, and appointment of Kurdish-speaking public servants in the region to facilitate the use of Kurdish language in accessing public services. Though they are outside the scope of this report, these administrative steps and similar others need to be negotiated upon with Kurdish political representatives and opinion leaders and put in practice soon.
  • Topic: Human Rights, Law, Constitution, Legislation, Kurds
  • Political Geography: Turkey, Middle East, Kurdistan
  • Author: Dilek Kurban, Konstantinos Tsitselikis
  • Publication Date: 07-2010
  • Content Type: Special Report
  • Institution: Turkish Economic and Social Studies Foundation (TESEV)
  • Abstract: This report aims to analyze the implications of reciprocity policies on the day-to-day lives of Muslim and non-Muslim minorities in Greece and Turkey, specifically their impact on the community foundations2 belonging to these minorities. With a specific focus on the property and self-management issues of Muslim and non-Muslim community foundations in Greece and Turkey, the report will try to situate the issue in its historical context and trace the evolution of the ‘community foundation issue’ from Lausanne to the present day. Drawing similarities and differences between the laws, policies, and practices of Greek and Turkish states vis-à-vis their minority foundations, the report will critically assess the progress made to this day as well as identify the outstanding issues. In the hope of contributing to efforts to develop a democratic, sustainable, and just resolution of the problems facing community foundations, the report will propose policy solutions to the governments of Turkey and Greece.
  • Topic: Human Rights, International Law, Treaties and Agreements, Law, Minorities
  • Political Geography: Turkey, Middle East, Greece