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  • Author: Thomas Diez
  • Publication Date: 08-1999
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Danish Institute for International Studies
  • Abstract: Driving me through Ankara only a couple of hours after I disembarked the plane, my Turkish colleague points to the latest apartment buildings and a hypermodern shopping mall further down the road. These places, he points out, would be ready for the EU. If only all of Turkey would already look like them - but eventually, it will. Only give us some time. And indeed, the economic change over the past decade seems remarkable. Then Prime Minister Turgut Özal's final abandonment of statism, one of the six pillars of Kemalism, in favour of a widespread, although still restricted, liberalisation strategy, looks like bearing visible fruits. Despite the Turkish economy nonetheless still experiencing a great deal of difficulties (inflation in 1999 was still above 60%, and that already was a huge improvement on previous years), my conversations in the following week centre on a different issue - Turkey's foreign policy. With its 40,000 soldiers in northern Cyprus, its continually problematic relationship with Greece, its ventures into northern Iraq and threatenings towards Syria, Turkey's foreign policy is, together with human rights issues, one of the central stumbling blocs for starting membership negotiations after the acknowledgement of candidate status in Helsinki. In Cyprus's southern part, the economic problem of the day is its overheated stockmarket. My friend multiplied his assets within half a year. More and more villas are mushrooming in beautiful settings, and the younger generation in particular is very well off. Accordingly, Cyprus is the forerunner in the enlargement negotiations, with a GNP per capita above some of the current EU member states (Pace 2000: 122). No wonder then that my conversation again focus on what most Cypriot politicians regard a domestic issue, but which at least has a strong foreign policy aspect to it: its policy towards the northern part of the island, 'under Turkish occupation' as the official labelling goes, and thereby also to Turkey. Despite Cyprus's status in the negotiations, its probable future membership is thus overshadowed by the conflict on the island.
  • Topic: Foreign Policy, Government, International Organization
  • Political Geography: Europe, Turkey, Middle East, Ankara
  • Author: Simon V. Mayall
  • Publication Date: 01-1997
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Institute for National Strategic Studies
  • Abstract: At the end of the Cold War every country was forced to reexamine the fundamental assumptions that had formed their security policies for the last 45 years. Among the "victors" of the Cold War, few countries were faced with a more disparate set of new circumstances than Turkey. Unlike the United States and Western Europe, "victory" for Turkey had a very ambivalent quality. Almost overnight Turkey moved from being the buttressing flank of one strategic region, to the epicenter of a new one.
  • Topic: Security, Defense Policy, Cold War, International Law, Nuclear Weapons, Religion
  • Political Geography: United States, Turkey