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The rise of the Eurasianist vision in Turkey

The Eurasianist vision for Turkey has gone beyond rhetoric, gaining weight especially with regard to defense and security, but its proponents are themselves divided on what the country’s Eurasian future should mean.
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Turkey’s April 16 referendum enabled President Recep Tayyip Erdogan to launch a structural transformation in the state apparatus on his way to executive presidency. The fundamental question now is which direction Turkey will take in the coming period. Erdogan’s first four foreign trips following the vote — all of them to the East — are indicative of a new orientation. After visiting India on April 30-May 1, Erdogan traveled to Sochi on May 3 for talks with Russian counterpart Vladimir Putin. He then visited Kuwait on May 8 before heading to China less than a week later to meet with Chinese President Xi Jinping and attend a regional cooperation forum.

In the meantime, Ankara took a severe blow from Washington. Overriding harsh Turkish objections, the administration made a decision to supply heavy weapons to the Syrian Kurdish People’s Protection Units, without even waiting for Erdogan’s May 16 meeting with President Donald Trump.

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