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TUSIAD Turkey Letter: 24 February 2014

This week:

Foreign Policy

  • Readout of President Obama’s Call with Prime Minister Erdogan
  • New Calls For Obama To Confront Turkey
  • Why the United States Is Getting Tough With Turkey
  • US the last state to advise Turkey on Internet: EU minister
  • Deputy Secretary of State William Burns Travels to Turkey and Ukraine

Domestic Politics

  • Fourth term for Turkey’s Erdogan possible, not on agenda yet – deputy PM
  • Turkey’s Erdogan Seeks Broader Intelligence Agency Powers
  • Turkey scraps coup plot courts in battle over judiciary
  • Turkey’s Internet Crackdown

Economy & Energy

  • Turkey attracts $12.6 billion FDI, down 4 percent
  • IMF, Britain warn emerging economies ahead of G-20

Foreign Policy

Readout of President Obama’s Call with Prime Minister Erdogan

President Obama spoke by phone today with Prime Minister Erdogan of Turkey on a range of bilateral and regional issues. The President affirmed the value he places on a strong, mutually respectful bilateral relationship with the Republic of Turkey and expressed his view that Turkey can demonstrate leadership in the world through positive engagement. Additionally, the President noted the importance of sound policies rooted in the rule of law to reassure the financial markets, nurture a predictable investment environment, strengthen bilateral ties, and benefit the future of Turkey.
~~~
White House, 19 February 2014, Readout of President Obama’s Call with Prime Minister Erdogan
Hurriyet Daily News, 20 February 2014, Obama, Erdoğan discuss Syria, Cyprus in rare phone conversation

New Calls For Obama To Confront Turkey

More than 80 top foreign policy figures from across the political spectrum wrote President Obama Thursday and asked him to end the U.S. government’s tacit approval of what they describe as the anti-democratic actions of Turkish Prime Minister Racep Tayyip Erdogan and his government.
~~~
Daily Beast, February 20 2014, New Calls For Obama To Confront Turkey

Why the United States Is Getting Tough With Turkey

It isn’t surprising that the Turkish government has blamed the United States for self-inflicted wounds. But it is surprising that the United States has finally responded forcefully. And, if Turkey’s behavior after the flap is any indication (it made a quick about-face on a number of issues that have been particularly angering the United States), the Obama administration should make getting tougher with Turkey a priority.
~~~
Foreign Affairs, 20 February 2014, False Friends

US the last state to advise Turkey on Internet: EU minister

The U.S. is the “last state to advise Turkey” with respect to the Internet, Turkish EU Minister Mevlüt Çavuşoğlu has said, responding to concerns expressed by Washington over the recent Internet law.
~~~
Hurriyet Daily News, 20 February 2014, US the last state to advise Turkey on Internet: EU minister

Deputy Secretary of State William Burns Travels to Turkey and Ukraine

Deputy Secretary of State William Burns will travel to Istanbul, Turkey on February 24, and to Kyiv, Ukraine from February 25 to 26.

In Istanbul, he will meet with Turkish Foreign Ministry Undersecretary Feridun Sinirlioglu to discuss the broad range of bilateral and regional issues on which Turkey and the United States are in regular contact, including the Syria crisis, counterterrorism, and the Cyprus settlement process.
~~~
State Department, 24 February 2014, Deputy Secretary of State William Burns Travels to Turkey and Ukraine

Domestic Politics

Fourth term for Turkey’s Erdogan possible, not on agenda yet – deputy PM

Turkey’s ruling AK Party could change its rules to allow Tayyip Erdogan to stand for a fourth term as prime minister in an “emergency” although such plans are not currently on the agenda, deputy Prime Minister Bulent Arinc said on Thursday.
~~~
Reuters, 20 February 2014, Fourth term for Turkey’s Erdogan possible, not on agenda yet – deputy PM

Turkey’s Erdogan Seeks Broader Intelligence Agency Powers

Turkey’s government submitted a draft law designed to give sweeping additional powers to its intelligence services, its latest move to expand executive control over key institutions ahead of pivotal elections.
~~~
Wall Street Journal, 20 February 2014, Turkey’s Erdogan Seeks Broader Intelligence Agency Powers

Turkey scraps coup plot courts in battle over judiciary

Turkish lawmakers on Friday abolished special courts which had convicted hundreds of alleged military coup plotters, as Prime Minister Tayyip Erdogan battles a new foe he sees as using influence in the judiciary to try to unseat him.
~~~
Reuters, 21 February 2014,

Turkey’s Internet Crackdown

President Abdullah Gul, Turkey’s head of state, has now joined Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan in the government’s assault on free speech. On Tuesday, Mr. Gul approved a new law, passed earlier by Parliament, that is intended to help protect Mr. Erdogan and his allies from a widening corruption scandal by tightening government control of the Internet. It would allow the authorities, without a court order, to block web pages under the guise of protecting personal privacy, and to collect users’ browsing histories.
~~~
New York Times, 21 February 2014, Turkey’s Internet Crackdown

Economy & Energy

Turkey attracts $12.6 billion FDI, down 4 percent

Turkey received foreign direct investment (FDI) of $12.6 billion in 2013, a drop of 4.1 percent compared to 2012, according to data released by the Economy Ministry.
~~~
Hurriyet Daily News, 21 February 2014, Turkey attracts $12.6 billion FDI, down 4 percent

IMF, Britain warn emerging economies ahead of G-20

IMF chief Christine Lagarde and British finance minister George Osborne on Feb. 20 demanded emerging economies get their own houses in order, after some attacked US monetary policy in the run-up to G-20 talks this weekend.
~~~
Hurriyet Daily News, 20 February 2014, IMF, Britain warn emerging economies ahead of G-20

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