2101 L Street, NW Suite 800 Washington, DC

+1 (202) 776-7770 [email protected]

Turkey Letter: 6 May 2019 

Foreign Policy:  

  • Erdogan: Turkey not seeking alternatives to ties with West 
  • NATO prods Turkey to choose U.S. over Russia in picking missiles 
  • Turkey says it will not bow to U.S. sanctions over S-400 deal  
  • Turkey begins offensive on Kurdish militias after attack  

Economy & Energy: 

  • Turkey near the Rubicon on Istanbul election extends lira’s funk   
  • U.S. and EU concerned by Turkey’s plans to drill off Cyprus  
  • Turkish consumer inflation unexpectedly slows  
  • Fitch holds Turkey’s credit rating at BB 
  • Turkey expects U.S. not to end preferential trade treatment  
  • Turkey says cannot quickly abandon Iranian oil as U.S. waivers end 

Domestic Politics:  

  • Turkey cancels Istanbul election won by opposition  
  • Turkey orders new election for Istanbul mayor, in setback for opposition  
  • Erdogan signals he backs re-run of contested Istanbul vote  
  • Turkey needs justice, CHP leader says ahead of YSK ruling on Istanbul poll 

Foreign Policy 

Erdogan: Turkey not seeking alternatives to ties with West  

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan says Turkeys decision to purchase Russian-made S-400 missile defense systems doesnt mean that it is seeking alternatives in its relations with the West. 

New York Times, Erdogan: Turkey not seeking alternatives to ties with West, 6 May 2019   


NATO prods Turkey to choose U.S. over Russia in picking missiles  

NATO’s chief embarked on a final push to convince Turkey to abandon its plan to buy Russian missiles by backing talks over its possible purchase of an alternative U.S.-made air-defense system. 

Bloomberg, NATO prods Turkey to choose U.S. over Russia in picking missiles, 5 May 2019 


 Turkey says it will not bow to U.S. sanctions over S-400 deal  

Turkey will never bow to U.S. sanctions over its agreement to purchase Russian S-400 surface-to-air missile defense systems, Vice President Fuat Oktay said on Sunday regarding a deal that has strained ties between the NATO allies. 

Reuters, Turkey says it will not bow to U.S. sanctions over S-400 deal, 5 May 2019   


Turkey begins offensive on Kurdish militias after attack  

Turkey began its largest offensive in months against Kurdish rebels across its borders, after its army came under attack from militants and faced hostile fire from forces loyal to Syrian President Bashar al-Assad. 

Bloomberg, Turkey begins offensive on Kurdish militias after attack, 4 May 2019 


Economy & Energy

Turkey near the Rubicon on Istanbul election extends lira’s funk   

Turkey’s top electoral body is under fierce pressure from President Recep Tayyip Erdogan as it nears a decision on whether to order a new contest for the mayor’s seat in Istanbul, a ruling that could inflict more damage on the economy by prolonging political turmoil. 

Bloomberg, Turkey near the Rubicon on Istanbul election extends lira’s funk, 6 May 2019   


 U.S. and EU concerned by Turkey’s plans to drill off Cyprus  

The United States and European Union have expressed deep concern over Turkeys plans for offshore drilling operations in an area claimed by Cyprus as its exclusive economic zone, adding to tensions between Ankara and its Western allies. 

Reuters, U.S. and EU concerned by Turkey’s plans to drill off Cyprus, 6 May 2019  


 Turkish consumer inflation unexpectedly slows  

Turkey’s consumer inflation slowed unexpectedly in April in a sign that weak domestic demand is taking its toll on prices. Consumer prices rose 19.5 percent in April from a year earlier, compared with an increase of 19.7 percent in March, Turkstat said on Friday. The median estimate in a Bloomberg survey of 18 economists was for an increase of 20.4 percent. Prices rose 1.7 percent in the month. 

Bloomberg, Turkish consumer inflation unexpectedly slows, 3 May 2019 


Fitch holds Turkey’s credit rating at BB 

Fitch on Friday affirmed its BB rating on Turkey’s debt and maintained a negative outlook, citing low foreign reserves and political risks. 

Financial Times, Fitch holds Turkey’s credit rating at BB, 3 May 2019 


 Turkey expects U.S. not to end preferential trade treatment  

Turkey is expecting the United States to not implement a decision to terminate the country’s preferential trade treatment under a program that allowed some exports to enter the United States duty free, the Turkish embassy in Washington said in a statement on Friday. 

Reuters, Turkey expects U.S. not to end preferential trade treatment, 3 May 2019 


Turkey says cannot quickly abandon Iranian oil as U.S. waivers end  

Turkey will be unable to diversify oil imports quickly after the United States ended waivers on purchases from Iran, the Turkish foreign minister said on Thursday, a day after a U.S.-imposed sanctions deadline passed. 

Reuters, Turkey says cannot quickly abandon Iranian oil as U.S. waivers end, 2 May 2019 


Domestic Politics 

Turkey cancels Istanbul election won by opposition  

Turkey’s national election board canceled results of the Istanbul mayoral race that President Recep Tayyip Erdogan’s ruling party lost five weeks ago and ordered a rerun, sparking outrage in opposition ranks and fueling investor concerns over heightened economic volatility. 

The Wall Street Journal, Turkey cancels Istanbul election won by opposition, 6 May 2019 


Turkey orders new election for Istanbul mayor, in setback for opposition  

Turkey’s electoral authorities on Monday ordered a rerun of the election for the mayor of Istanbul, annulling a crushing electoral defeat for President Recep Tayyip Erdogan but raising the prospect that the highly contentious decision would usher in social unrest and a new economic crisis. 

New York Times, Turkey orders new election for Istanbul mayor, in setback for opposition, 6 May 2019  


Erdogan signals he backs re-run of contested Istanbul vote  

Turkish President Tayyip Erdogan signaled on Saturday he backs a re-run of mayoral elections in Istanbul which resulted in a narrow victory for the main opposition Republican People’s Party (CHP) for the first time in 25 years. 

Reuters, Erdogan signals he backs re-run of contested Istanbul vote, 4 May 2019 


Turkey needs justice, CHP leader says ahead of YSK ruling on Istanbul poll 

One of Turkey’s immediate needs is justice, the leader of Turkey’s main opposition party has said, calling on the election watchdog to finalize its month-long scrutiny of the Istanbul polls and confirm Ekrem İmamoğlu as mayor. 

Hurriyet, Turkey needs justice, CHP leader says ahead of YSK ruling on Istanbul poll, 3 May 2019