By Barçın Yinanç
January 17, 2022
While it was fear of Russia that prevented the Central Asian countries from showing an interest in the Middle Corridor, it is ironically the same Russian factor that has today led to the reinvigoration of this alternative to the Northern Corridor. However, crucially, the future of the Middle Corridor depends on European interest and particularly on the European Union revising its attitude toward Turkey that has been spearheading the project for more than a decade and that is indispensable to its realization. European decision makers must recognize that they need to join hands with Turkey to make the Middle Corridor come to fruition.
By Natalia Konarzewska
December 13, 2022
Turkey has seized on the opportunity to bolster its standing as an “energy power,” but Russia’s offer to expand the existing Turk Stream pipeline and create a natural gas hub in Turkey seems to be a ‘’pipe dream’’ under current circumstances. The feasibility of the project is highly questionable. The Russian proposal may in fact not be seriously intended. Rather than a realistic goal, it appears mostly to be a window-dressing maneuver in order to put pressure on gas-deprived Europe. Yet even though there are several obstacles to its realization, and ultimately may not be feasible, the Russian proposition nonetheless offers Turkey a welcome opportunity to advance its long-standing goal to turn itself into an energy hub at the crossroads of Europe, Asia and the Middle East.
By Alan Makovsky
May 12, 2022
Despite suffering economic consequences, Turkey is diplomatically strengthened by the Ukraine war, reinforcing and seemingly validating the “strategic autonomy within NATO” course that President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan has pursued in recent years. This, in turn, may help determine the outcome of the presidential election next year.
By Natalia Konarzewska
March 4, 2022
Turkey insists on maintaining close relations both with Russia and Ukraine, but this balancing act has become near-impossible to maintain after the Russian invasion of Ukraine. A week into the invasion, Kyiv received a new batch of drones from Turkey that have already proved their effectiveness against the Russian forces. Even though Turkey will seek to maintain a balance as far as possible, its strong military ties with Ukraine speak of its geopolitical ambition to contain Russia. Turkey’s relation with Russia is transactional, while its commitment to the defense of Ukraine is an expression of Turkey’s strategic vision and its adherence to the geopolitical goals of the Western alliance. That will ultimately prove decisive.
By Emil Avdaliani
October 5, 2020
Turkey increasingly views Ukraine, Georgia and Azerbaijan as parts of an arc that could help it balance Russia’s growing military presence in the Black Sea and in the South Caucasus. With this objective in mind, Ankara is stepping up its military cooperation not only with Baku, but also with Tbilisi and Kyiv. Turkey is signaling that it intends to play a far more active role in the Black Sea-Caucasus region in order to contain Russia’s influence. This regional strategy has wider implications as it demonstrates that Turkey, contrary to what has become a common perception in the West, is not moving closer toward Russia and that in fact Turkish and the Western geopolitical interests largely converge, with Turkey supporting Georgia’s NATO ambitions.
The Turkey Analyst is a publication of the Central Asia-Caucasus Institute & Silk Road Studies Joint Center, designed to bring authoritative analysis and news on the rapidly developing domestic and foreign policy issues in Turkey. It includes topical analysis, as well as a summary of the Turkish media debate.