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Turkey Letter: January 22, 2018 

Foreign Policy:

  • Turkey’s Erdogan vows to press offensive on U.S.-backed Kurds in Syria
  • Tillerson ‘concerned’ at Turkey’s expanding Syria offensive
  • Mattis: Turkey Alerted US Before Striking Kurds in Syria
  • Turkey ‘determined’ to hit YPG despite US call
  • Turkey to propose EU ‘CoE formula’ for visa liberalization
  • NATO’s deputy head to visit Istanbul and Ankara
  • US judge seeks internal communications in Turkey case

Economy and Energy:

  • Turkey Expo 2018 aims to boost exports to Qatar, more than 100 Turkish companies represented
  • European bank invested 1.6 billion euros in record 51 projects in Turkey in 2017
  • Turkey Holds Rates in ‘More Hawkish’ Statement on Inflation

Domestic Politics:

  • Turkey’s emergency rule should be ended as soon as possible TUSİAD urges
  • Leading Turkish business group TUSİAD changes name over gender concerns
  • İYİ Party leader Akşener testifies for prosecutor over ‘weapons training camps’ claims
  • State of emergency in Turkey extended for sixth time
  • AKP-MHP commission meets for 2019 election alliance

Foreign Policy:

 

Turkey’s Erdogan vows to press offensive on U.S.-backed Kurds in Syria

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan vowed to keep up an offensive against U.S.-backed Kurdish militias in Syria, ignoring the calls for restraint urged by the Americans. Turkey on the 20th announced their plans for an air and ground attack on the Kurdish militia, YPG, from Afrin.

Washington Post, Turkey’s Erdogan vows to press offensive on U.S.-backed Kurds in Syria , January 22, 2018 


Tillerson ‘concerned’ at Turkey’s expanding Syria offensive

US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson expressed his “concern” about Turkey’s offensive against the Kurdish militia in northern Syria. He stopped short of demanding an end to the operation but urged the use of restraint.

CNN, Tillerson ‘concerned’ at Turkey’s expanding Syria offensive, January 22, 2018


Mattis: Turkey Alerted US Before Striking Kurds in Syria

US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson expressed his “concern” about Turkey’s offensive against the Kurdish militia in northern Syria. He stopped short of demanding an end to the operation but urged the use of restraint.

VOA, Mattis: Turkey Alerted US Before Striking Kurds in Syria, January21, 2018


Turkey ‘determined’ to hit YPG despite US call

Defense Minister Nurettin Canikli, in an interview on the morning of the 19th with private broadcaster A Haber, affirmed that Turkey will be carrying out a military operation in Afrin in northern Syria. Ankara and Moscow will continue talks on the operation and the military action in Afrin should be carried out without delay.

Hürriyet Daily News, Turkey ‘determined’ to hit YPG despite US call, January 19, 2018


Turkey to propose EU ‘CoE formula’ for visa liberalization

Turkey will be submitting a position paper with the EU that would open up a dialogue on visa liberalization. Foreign Minister Mevlüt Çavuşoğlu told Hürriyet Daily News on Jan. 18 that the work conducted by the Turkish ministers does not envisage change in Turkey’s anti-terror law because of the potential for it to portray the idea of weakness even if it does not practically bring vulnerability.

Hürriyet Daily News, Turkey to propose EU ‘CoE formula’ for visa liberalization, January 19, 2018


NATO’s deputy head to visit Istanbul and Ankara

On January 22, NATO’s Deputy Secretary General Rose Gottemoeller is set to arrive in Turkey. She will be holding meetings with Foreign Affairs Deputy Minister Ambassador Ahmet Yildiz in Ankara on 22 January. Then Gottemoeller will be proceeding to Istanbul on 23 January to visit the 3rd Army Corps and Multinational Joint Warfare Centre Command as well as deliver a speech at the National Defense University.

Hürriyet Daily News, NATO’s deputy head to visit Istanbul and Ankara, January 19, 2018


US judge seeks internal communications in Turkey Case

US District Judge Richard Berman, in the federal court in Manhattan, directed for all the government and defense attorneys involved in the Turkey Case to hand over all internal communications with any officials of the US or Turkish governments relating to the case.

The Washington Post, US judge seeks internal communications in Turkey case, January 18, 2018


Economy and Energy:

 

Turkey Expo 2018 aims to boost exports to Qatar, more than 100 Turkish companies represented

At Expo Turkey 2018, where over 100 Turkish companies gathered, talks were held in order to discuss how the Qatari capital of Doha plans to help Turkish companies increase their share of the imports of Qatar.

Hürriyet Daily News, Turkey Expo 2018 aims to boost exports to Qatar, more than 100 Turkish companies represented, January 18, 2018


European bank invested 1.6 billion euros in record 51 projects in Turkey in 2017

The European Bank for Reconstruction and Devlopment (EBRD) has invested 1.6 billion euros into 51 projects in Turkey in 2017. Arvid Tuerkner, the new EBRD Managing Director for Turkey, is said to continue this level of investement in 2018.

Hürriyet Daily News, European bank invested 1.6 billion euros in record 51 projects in Turkey in 2017, January 18, 2018


Turkey Holds Rates in ‘More Hawkish’ Statement on Inflation

The Central bank has decided to hold the rates unchanged because they believe that the temporary slowdown of inflation is not enough of a reason to ease up on the policies that are in place. The Governor of the Central bank, Murat Cetinkaya, is planning to release a two-year roadmap for inflation at some point this month

Bloomberg, Turkey Holds Rates in ‘More Hawkish’ Statement on Inflation, January 18, 2018


Domestic Politics:

 

Turkey’s emergency rule should be ended as soon as possible TUSİAD urges

TUSIAD has voiced its concern about the state of emergency’s effect of foreign investment and has urged that it end “as soon as possible.” They have also urged the “restoration of democratic rule” in the country.

Hürriyet Daily News, Turkey’s emergency rule should be ended as soon as possible TUSİAD urges, January 18, 2018


Leading Turkish business group TUSİAD changes name over gender concerns

In order to bring in a new era of women empowerment and take a step towards gender equality, TUSIAD has changed its Turkish name. The name has been changed from the Turkish Industrialists and Businessmen Association to the Turkish Industrialists and Businesspeople Association.

Hürriyet Daily News, Leading Turkish business group TUSİAD changes name over gender concerns, January 18, 2018


İYİ Party leader Akşener testifies for prosecutor over ‘weapons training camps’ claims

Meral Aksener, the leader of the iyi Party, has testified for a prosecutor concerning her claims that civilians in two Turkish cities were receiving weapons training in militia camps. These allegations are said to be based off of photographs that Aksner obtained from someone who “had worked in the public sector.” Following these allegations, the Ankara Chief Public Prosecutor’s office initiated an investigation.

Hürriyet Daily News, İYİ Party leader Akşener testifies for prosecutor over ‘weapons training camps’ claims, January 19, 2018


State of emergency in Turkey extended for sixth time

After the Turkish Parliament ratified a prime ministry motion on January 18 extended the state of emergency in Turkey for another three months.

Hürriyet Daily News, State of emergency in Turkey extended for sixth time, January 18, 2018

 


AKP-MHP commission meets for 2019 election alliance

On January 18, officials from the Ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP) and Nationalist Movement Party (MHP) gathered to discuss the legal procedures that will bring their “national alliance” together for the 2019 elections.

Hürriyet Daily News, AKP-MHP commission meets for 2019 election alliance, January 18, 2018