The Battle for Turkey’s Presidency


Frontline Club event on 25 July 2014

It is just over a year since protests to save Istanbul’s Gezi Park escalated after being met by an uncompromising stance from the government and a police crackdown. What started as an environmental movement became a wider protest against the perceived increased authoritarianism of the country’s leader.

As the protests continue and with the country due to vote in the first round of the presidential elections in early August, we will be bringing together a panel to gauge the political climate. With accusations of cronyism and mass corruption inside the government, we will explore what the protestors are fighting for and how much support they have across the country.

President Recep Tayyip Erdogan faced large-scale criticism following his reaction to the industrial disaster that killed over 300 miners. We will be asking how much support he still maintains in the country and if he is to contest and win the election what does this mean for Turkey?

Chaired by Murat Nisancioglu, the head of Turkish Service at BBC Global News.

The panel:

Alexander Christie-Miller is a freelance journalist and Turkey correspondent for Newsweek, The Times, and the Christian Science Monitor. He has lived and worked in Istanbul for the past four years.

Fadi Hakura is an associate fellow at the Europe programme, Chatham House.

Sir David Reddaway was British Ambassador to Turkey from 2009 until January 2014. His other posts include Ambassador to Ireland, High Commissioner to Canada, Charge d’Affaires in Iran and UK Special Representative for Afghanistan.

Karabekir Akkoyunlu has recently completed a PhD in comparative politics at the LSE, where he researched political change in Iran and Turkey and taught classes on democratisation and Middle East politics. He was also a research associate at the Southeast European Studies at Oxford (SEESOX) working on Turkish foreign policy.


Watch and listen here.

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