13 June 2013 Washington

Members of the Turkish Foreign Ministry’s Center for Strategic Research (SAM) have discussed Turkish Foreign Policy towards the Middle East in the context of the Arab Spring. The panel discussion entitled “Turkey and the Arab Spring” took place on 13th June 2013 and hosted by renowned the Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars aka the Wilson Center.

The SAM delegation consisted of Prof Bülent Aras, SAM Chairman, Assoc Prof Mesut Özcan, SAM Deputy Chairman, and Assoc Prof Şaban Kardaş of TOBB ETU University, Ankara.

The speakers shed light on the factors that influenced Turkey's response to the democratic uprisings of the Middle Eastern people for last three years, with special emphasis on the Syrian case, Turkey’s ongoing domestic challenges and implications of the current affairs for Turkey and other states within the region. Other issues covered on the course of panel were Turkey and the EU relations and its prospect vis-à-vis the Arab awakening, Turkish-Iran, Turkish-Iraqi, Turkish-Israeli and Turkish-Russian relations, and Turkey’s perspective regarding the ethnic and sectarian politics in the region.