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MARC PIERINI: Making Sense of Turkey’s Foreign Policy…..Turkey and EU ink readmission agreement and visa-liberalization protocol…

In Uncategorized on December 17, 2013 at 00:36

 

Making Sense of Turkey’s Foreign Policy
MARC PIERINI

It has become an understatement in Western diplomatic circles to say that Turkey’s foreign policy is becoming more difficult to understand. In the eyes of Turkey’s Western partners, Ankara frequently fluctuates on international issues, displays a distinct lack of consistency in dealing with its friends and allies, and occasionally gives off the scent of an imperial attitude. These troublesome characteristics have become the hallmarks of Turkey’s diplomatic initiatives and statements, making it difficult—and at times perplexing—to make sense of Ankara’s foreign policy aims.

Yet Washington, Berlin, and Brussels see Turkey as a member of NATO and the Council of Europe as well as a candidate for EU accession and expect Ankara to display a pattern of behavior compatible with these affiliations. So why is Turkey’s foreign policy so erratic? And how should the West react?………………………………

Turks could soon enjoy visa-free travel to the European Union after Ankara signed Dec 16 a long-awaited Readmission Agreement

Visa restrictions for Turkish nationals are lifted in return, weeks after country resumed EU membership negotiations

Turkey has signed agreements to take back immigrants who illegally enter the EU from Turkish territory, in return for visa restrictions being lifted for their citizens travelling across Europe. The Turkish prime minister, Recep Tayyip Erdogan, called the deal a milestone.

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