RECON Online Working Paper 2011/23

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The European Union's Foreign Policy

The Perceptions of the Turkish Parliamentarians   


Meltem Müftüler-Baç (Sabanci University, Istanbul) and Rahime Süleymanoğlu-Kürüm (Nottingham University)




In this paper, we analyze the Turkish perceptions of the European Union’s Common Foreign and Security Policy (CFSP) in an attempt to understand the EU’s evolving character as a ‘federal state’ or an ‘intergovernmental organization’ or a ‘cosmopolitan union’. The analysis of the Turkish perceptions of the EU’s foreign policy is conducted through an investigation of the debates in the Turkish Parliament, the legislature in Turkish politics, from 2000 to 2010. We identified four different camps in Turkish politics, the right-wing nationalists, Islamists, liberals and the left-wing nationalists who are all politically represented in the Turkish Parliament in varying degrees. The proceedings in the Turkish Parliament enable us to analyze the different political camps’ positions on the European foreign policy thoroughly. The different views of these groups vis-à-vis the EU’s foreign policy is critical in mapping the Turkish perceptions, and in order to do so, we focused on these different deliberations in the Parliament. The contested development of the EU’s foreign and security policy could also be reflected in the external assessments of this policy so the Turkish Parliamentarians’ perceptions matter. Consequently, we expect to understand the Turkish perceptions of the EU in foreign and security policy – its CFSP and CESDP – as an outside assessment of the EU’s direction towards any of the RECON models.



CFSP/ESDP ― Common Foreign and Security Policy ― Enlargement ― European Security and Defense Policy ― International Relations ― Political Participation ― Security/external ― Turkey

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