Turkish influence in the South Caucasus and Levant: the consequences for NATO and the EU
Thompson, Eric S.
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This thesis examines Turkeys growth as a power under the Justice and Development Party (Adalet ve Kalkinma Partisi; AKP) government, and the implications for European institutions. In particular, this study: reflects on the intertwined historical connection between Turkey and Europe in the South Caucasus and Levant; examines the extent to which Turkeys interest and policies under the AKP and European Union (EU)- North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) interest and policies intersect and diverge in the two regions; and evaluates the implications and avenues for cooperation in areas of common interest. The analysis and assessment shows Turkeys policies in the South Caucasus dovetail with EU-NATO regional interest and are not politically Islamic but pragmatic in nature. In the Levant, similar to the South Caucasus, the AKPs interest and policies are somewhat aligned to those of EU-NATO; however, the regions volatility and Turkeys cultural and religious linkages to the Middle East are an added dimension which shapes the AKPs independent foreign policy trajectory. Additionally, realpolitik, not Islamism, rules the AKPs interaction with both state and non-state regional political actors.
RightsThis publication is a work of the U.S. Government as defined in Title 17, United States Code, Section 101. Copyright protection is not available for this work in the United States.
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