2101 L Street, NW Suite 800 Washington, DC

+1 (202) 776-7770 [email protected]

TUSIAD Turkey Letter: 13 January 2014

This week:

Foreign Policy

  • Kerry holds joint-press conference with Turkish counterpart in Paris
  • Turkey Chases New Defense Deals in Asia
  • Syria threatens stability in Turkey, US think tank report warns

Domestic Politics

  • In Scandal, Turkey’s Leaders May Be Losing Their Tight Grip on News Media
  • Turkey clamps down on internet as Erdogan tightens grip on power
  • Turkey’s top business group warns against Internet censorship
  • Turkey Graft Probe Begets Campaign of Reprisals as Toll Mounts
  • Punches fly as Turkish MPs debate judicial reform
  • Turkey’s Democratic Mirage

Economy/Energy

  • Turkey’s economic success threatened by political instability
  • Turkish 2013 automotive sales up 9.72 percent
  • Turkey’s defense exports up 10 percent to $1.4 billion

Foreign Policy

Kerry holds joint-press conference with Turkish counterpart in Paris

US Secretary of State John Kerry met with Turkish Foreign Minister Ahmet Davutoḡlu in Paris on 12 January for a diplomatic meeting. The two discussed a variety of topics, including their countries’ shared interests in Syria, Iraq, and the Iranian nuclear negotiations. Regarding the recent corruption scandal which has rocked Turkish politics, Kerry made clear that “the United States of America has absolutely no interest in being caught up in or engaged in or involved in the internal politics, the election process of Turkey.”
~~~
State Department, 12 January 2014, Remarks With Turkish Foreign Minister Ahmet Davutoglu After Their Meeting

Turkey Chases New Defense Deals in Asia

Wary of political problems and licensing restrictions with its traditional western suppliers, Turkey is turning toward Asian markets for new deals, including the development of a tank engine with Japan and the sale of new armored vehicles to Malaysia.
~~~
Defense News, 11 January 2014, Turkey Chases New Defense Deals in Asia

Syria threatens stability in Turkey, US think tank report warns

A report released last month by the American think tank the Council on Foreign Relations (CFR) has warned that an intensification of the civil war in Syria could prompt a limited external intervention by the US or its allies in 2014 and that the ongoing conflict threatens the stability of US allies, especially Turkey and Jordan.
~~~
Today’s Zaman, 7 January 2014, Syria threatens stability in Turkey, US think tank report warns

Domestic Politics

In Scandal, Turkey’s Leaders May Be Losing Their Tight Grip on News Media

Under Mr. Erdogan’s leadership, Turkey has gained a reputation for harassing and intimidating the news media. More journalists are in jail in Turkey than anywhere else in the world, including China and Iran. The close relationship between Mr. Erdogan’s government and news media bosses has often meant that journalists need to toe the government line if they are to keep their jobs.
~~~
New York Times, 11 January 2014, In Scandal, Turkey’s Leaders May Be Losing Their Tight Grip on News Media

Turkey clamps down on internet as Erdogan tightens grip on power

Turkey is seeking to increase control over internet access at a time when the government is also tightening its grip on the country’s legal institutions in response to a corruption scandal.
~~~
Financial Times, 12 January 2014, Turkey clamps down on internet as Erdogan tightens grip on power

Turkey’s top business group warns against Internet censorship

Turkey’s top business group has warned that a government-led bill to increase control over the Internet is worrying and the planned regulations might lead to wide censorship on the Internet.
~~~
Hurriyet Daily News, 13 January 2014, Turkey’s top business group warns against Internet censorship

Turkey Graft Probe Begets Campaign of Reprisals as Toll Mounts

Turkey’s ruling party ordered purges of police chiefs and moved to tighten control of the judiciary, as a top official said there’s no chance of a truce in the struggle with prosecutors leading a corruption probe.
~~~
Bloomberg, 8 January 2014, Turkey Graft Probe Begets Campaign of Reprisals as Toll Mounts

Punches fly as Turkish MPs debate judicial reform

Turkish parliamentarians threw punches and water bottles during a debate on Saturday about government control over the appointment of judges and prosecutors, as a feud over the ruling party’s handling of a corruption scandal intensified.
~~~
Reuters, 11 January 2014, Punches fly as Turkish MPs debate judicial reform

Turkey’s Democratic Mirage

The country could still not be considered a consolidated democracy, a state of affairs in which democracy, has, in Przeworski’s words, “become the only game in town, when no one can imagine acting outside the democratic institutions, when all the losers want to do is to try again within the same institutions under which they have lost.” writes Steven Cook of the Council on Foreign Relations.
~~~
Council on Foreign Relations, 9 January 2014, Turkey’s Democratic Mirage

Economy/Energy

Turkey’s economic success threatened by political instability

Turkey’s strong economic growth over the past decade, bringing relative prosperity to previously neglected parts of the country, has underpinned the popularity of the prime minister, Recep Tayyip Erdoğan, and his mildly Islamist Justice and Development party (AKP).

But the danger of a worsening economy is compounding the instability, essentially political, that has seized the country in the past year, generating the biggest crisis of Erdoğan’s 11 years in power – just before local and national elections this year and next.
~~~
The Guardian, 9 January 2014, Turkey’s economic success threatened by political instability

Turkish 2013 automotive sales up 9.72 percent

Turkish automotive sales rose 9.72 percent year-on-year in 2013 to 853,378 vehicles, the Automotive Distributors’ Association (ODD) said on Tuesday.
~~~
Reuters, 7 January 2014,

Turkey’s defense exports up 10 percent to $1.4 billion

Turkey’s defense exports totaled $1.4 billion in 2013, marking a 10 percent rise from the previous year, Turkey’s Defense and Aerospace Industry Exporters’ Association (SSİ) has said.
~~~
Hurriyet Daily News, 13 January 2014, Turkey’s defense exports up 10 percent to $1.4 billion

These news items are compiled by TUSIAD Washington Representative Office (TUSIAD-US) from major news publications. They do not necessarily reflect the views or positions of TUSIAD. To subscribe or unsubscribe from this electronic publication, please send an e-mail to [email protected] These materials may be reproduced and/or distributed, in whole or in part, provided that its source is properly indicated as “TUSIAD-US Web site: www.tusiad.us