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Anatolia has always been at a crossroads of history. Hittites, Greeks, Celts, Romans, Turks...all have occupied this spit of land caught between Europe, Africa, and Asia. Now, this mixture of West and East has become a phenomenon unique in situation but universal in relevance. All eyes now turn to Taksim Square and Gezi Park, as Turkey's 'silent minority' rise in protest against the systems maintaining the government's power and the authoritarian cooption of space that it represents. Can the twilight of the sultans give way to a new, Turkish dawn?


No more popular protests? Reflections on Turkey’s Domestic Security Bill

Accuse the government of illegal use of force by the police, and what you get in return is the government inventing ways to make it legal, by treating popular protests as potential acts of terrorism.

Reflections on responses to the Falk-Davutoglu interview

Turkey’s democratic future is dependent on a government and political opposition that foster national unity and a pluralist political culture and values of power sharing.

Repression and resistance in Istanbul: Tarlabaşı and Me

"Tarlabaşı is a place to hide."  Soon, there won't be any place to hide… 

Reading Ahmet Davutoğlu's comments

President Erdoğan, no doubt, sees this as the culmination of an Islamic administrative system—a system which, during the brief periods it worked, could be considered "democratic", in the 8th or 9th century.

Turkey, openDemocracy and ‘so-called pluralist debate’

We were pleased to take a rare opportunity to publish an interview with Turkey's prime minister. We humbly hope we are at the beginning of this journey, not the end.

Reflections on my interview with the Turkish prime minister

Why was there such a fuss? Should we never listen to what political leaders have to say in explanation of their policies?

The cost of digital silence in Turkey: 40 million euros

Turkey is known for attempts to control information contradicting official propaganda. However, a recent deal between the Turkish Government and a Swedish company running software to combat child porn could silence the digital opposition permanently.

What does the ‘New Turkey’ stand for?

Through multiple New Turkeys, the country seems not to have settled as yet on its political course. Turkey is always new, forever young, never passing the stage of puberty.

Turkey: tarnished democratic credentials imperil regional stability

Turkey's human rights credentials should be a foreign policy priority for everyone, not just for so-called consolidated democracies interested only in hosting Erdoğan at expensive dinner tables.

Turkey cannot be a global power until it is a stable democracy

On the rise of Turkey, its messy foreign policy, and the AKP's internal 'enemies'–Richard Falk's discussion with the Turkish PM provokes more questions than answers.

Welcome to the parallel universe: Richard Falk’s interview with PM Davutoglu

Through his references to things that are mundane, Erdogan speaks to people’s pockets. And through his references to God and the ancestors, he speaks to people’s hearts.

Reconciling the AKP's vision of Turkey

Turkey's reality is hardly the picture of unabated democratic progress that Prime Minister Davutoğlu paints. But should the AKP be judged so harshly for continuing what are, by comparison, some of the milder faults of its predecessors? 

Turkey has elections, but not democracy

Whatever shortcomings today’s Turkey has, they cannot all be pinned on AKP rule. But democracy and governance are deeply troubled and becoming more so.

Turkish PM in conversation, part 4: The Arab Spring and Turkey’s future

Has the Arab Spring failed to go far enough? What kind of complicating factor is ISIS? Turkey's PM calls for a stategy to ensure democracy survives in the region–and hints at the opportunity Europe has.

Turkish PM in conversation, part 3: How do you create a fairer society?

Can Turkey talk about its concern for social welfare given its rapacious capitalist practises, lack of labour rights and persisting gender inequality? Prime Minister Davutoğlu elaborates on his 9-point programme.

Turkish PM in conversation, Part 2: Old Turkey, New Turkey

Many observers fear Turkey is heading towards majoritarian tyranny. How does Turkey's 'representative democracy' contrast with General Sisi's claims that he represents the 'general will' of Egypt?

Turkish Prime Minister Ahmet Davutoğlu in conversation: Part 1

The AKP government has ruled Turkey for 12 years, presiding over dramatic economic growth and increased global prestige. Critics say that internal opposition has been silenced, democratic freedoms trampled and corruption is still rife. 

Say what you want, think what you like

This week's 'interview' with the Turkish PM is deeply problematic, sometimes enraging. It lets large tracts of propaganda go unchallenged. Here's why we published it anyway.

Positive discrimination a la Erdoğan and its political background

Erdogan’s controversial comments calling gender equality into question come at a time when women’s issues have become connected to the very idea of the Turkish state and civilisational values.

Turkey, Kobane and the Kurdish question

The US wants Turkey to join the military effort against Islamic State at Kurdish-dominated Kobane, across the Syrian border—but Ankara’s focus is the Kurds within its own.

Race and racism in modern Turkey

Ninety years since the establishment of the Republic, in an ever more complex society, the limitations and contradictions of Turkish national identity are coming to the fore more and more. 

Turkey’s Arab Alawites and the Syrian conflict

Turkey's Alawites do not face the same threats as the people of Syria and Iraq. Despite the porous nature of Turkey's southern border, it is not about to collapse. But the Alawites of Hatay feel vulnerable.

How ISIS impacts on Turkey’s daily life

We must face up to the fact that an Islamic terror has now entered Turkey if we are to find a solution to the danger which is ISIS and the political and societal problems that give rise to it.

Democratic representation of pro-Kurdish political parties in Turkey

In Turkey, political parties are evaluated by the Constitution Court according to their commitment to the 1982 Constitution. But you have to look to Europe for neutral universal principles, or something close.

The 2014 presidential elections in Turkey: a post-election analysis

The August 2014 presidential election is important not only for its own sake, but even more so for what it portends for the future of Turkish democracy.

Can the EU clean up politics in enlargement countries? Turkey as a case in point

What are some of the lessons learned from the EU’s experiences in Bulgaria and Romania, and what could they mean for Turkey?

On the margins: secular human rights in Turkey

In Turkey, Muslim groups have used the “human rights” framework to protect their religious practices, such as wearing headscarves in universities and workplaces. But what happens when the “rights” demanded by dominant religious groups contradict the rights and demands of others? Türkçe

What Turkey needs from the Davutoglu Government

It is a great opportunity for Turkey that former Minister of European Union Affairs Mevlut Cavusoglu became Davutoglu government’s Foreign Minister in order to restore relations with the EU and continue the accession process.

Is time running out for the proposed Israel-Turkey gas pipeline?

Much of the increased trade is in effect being conducted under the radar. The construction of a major gas pipeline, on the other hand, would definitely not escape public attention.

Will Turkey’s centre-left dare to reform itself?

The problem is that the Republican People's Party (Turkey's centre-left main political party) remains torn between the supporters of a European-style social democracy and those of a die-hard Kemalism. 

Turkish-Kurdish peace: has the hour come?

Could Kurdish voices become part of the political mainstream in Turkey; and could the PKK have its status as “terrorist” removed? 

President Erdogan and the gender repercussions of political Islam

Can a new victorious president, ready to transform Turkey, sustain a Muslim modernity while bypassing the individual rights and liberties of women and gay citizens? 

Naming the political game in Turkey: populism

Turkey elected its first president through direct suffrage; so what can we expect now? It is populism that is increasingly in charge of Turkey's politics -  not any one person.

Turkey's new Caliph: understanding Erdoğan's hegemony

Erdoğan’s authoritarian and arrogant response to protests confirms his opponents’ fears that he is seeking to make himself a strongman ruler in the mould of Vladimir Putin, who also swapped being Prime Minister for President.

Turkey's presidential election candidates

An overview of the strengths and weaknesses of Turkey's presidential candidates, and of the electorate's views, indicate that Erdoğan will be the victor of the upcoming elections on 10 August 2014.

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