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  • 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: Vladimir Šulović
  • Publication Date: 01-2010
  • Content Type: Special Report
  • Institution: Belgrade Centre for Security Policy
  • Abstract: Since its inception the security studies represent the core of the International Relations, predominantly dealing with the issues of war and peace. In the years following the Second World War security studies have become a synonym for Strategic Studies with a distinct focus on the military sector. However, with the growing complexity of the international relations` agenda, namely with the rise of economic and environmental challenges count, emergence of the new security challenges, risks and threats, emergence of the new international relations` actors, the traditional view of the sole concept of security, that is, its essence, has become too narrow.
  • Topic: International Security
  • Political Geography: Global Focus
  • Author: Melissa Conley Tyler
  • Publication Date: 12-2010
  • Content Type: Special Report
  • Institution: Australian Institute of International Affairs
  • Abstract: The Australian Institute of International Affairs (AIIA) was established over 75 years ago to promote public understanding and interest in international affairs. In recent years, the AIIA has been increasingly active in promoting its activities to younger members of the community. The AIIA has launched a variety of initiatives to involve young people including Young Professional Networks, careers fairs, schools events and the Young Diplomat Program. This has helped the AIIA reach its present strength of more than 1600 members across seven State and Territory Branches.
  • Topic: International Affairs
  • Political Geography: Australia
  • 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