On the occasion of the 100th anniversary of the Balkan Wars, a series of conferences under the title “From Balkan Wars to Balkan Peace” had been organised throughout the year in various Balkan countries. The last cycle of the series in the Balkans, entitled “The Centenary of Ottoman Withdrawal from the Balkans: What Did They Left? A Civilization or An Occupation?” took place on 12-15th October 2012 in Podgorica.
The conference was co-organised by the Turkish Embassy in Montenegro, Montenegrin Academy of Sciences and Arts, Turkish-Montenegrin Friendship Association and Turkish International Cooperation and Development Agency (TIKA) Office in Montenegro.
The inaugural speech of the conference was delivered by Filip Vujanović, President of Montenegro, while Nebojša Kaluđerović, Montenegrin Foreign Minister, also addressed the participants.
In the course of the conference, the Center for Strategic Research (SAM) organised a special panel entitled “Foreign Policy and International Relations” which was co-chaired by Mehmet Niyazi Tanılır, Ambassador of Turkey to Montenegro, and Assoc Prof Akif Kireççi, Bilkent University, Ankara. The presentations delivered during the panel were “Turkey and the Balkans in the 2000s” by Assist Prof Ferhat Pirinççi, Uludağ University, “Ottoman Presence in the Balkans” by Prof Cezmi Eraslan, Istanbul University and “International Balance of Power and the Balkans in Historical Context” by Assist Prof Burak Tangör, Public Administration Institute For Turkey And the Middle East.
The meeting that attracted an extensive participation from the academia and resident diplomats in Montenegro later continued with the discussion and Q&A session in which the questions focused mainly on Turkey’s policy on the Balkans in the last decade and Turkish-Montenegrin bilateral relations.