Special correspondent’s reception – “Erdogan’s Turkey – where next?”

FRIDAY OCTOBER 6th –  9 pm

15 months after the failed putsch against President Erdogan, Turkey is teetering between collective hysteria and a reign of terror. More than 138,000 public employees have been dismissed, 2,000 schools and 1,500 media outlets have been closed, and 55,000 people have been imprisoned,  with sentences ranging from 30 to 142 years in prison, either in the name of the fight against terrorism, or because of supposed links with the Islamist brotherhood of Gûlen. Almost 900 companies, with total assets valued at $14 billion, have been expropriated. Soldiers and policemen have been arrested and investors are fleeing.

Could it be that the failed coup d’état is being used as a pretext to justify this massive encroachment on the apparatus of the state, and such a concentration of powers in the hands of a single individual?  Last April Erdogan held a referendum on the constitution which gave him, with a 52% majority, the right to combine, as from 2019, the functions of Head of State, Prime Minister and leader of his parliamentary party, in addition to being responsible for appointing half of the most senior judges. No president in the history of Turkey has occupied so many offices simultaneously.

Talking about Turkey means talking about Erdogan: the re-emergence of a cult of authority, a revival of the ostentation of the Ottoman Empire, the harking back to somewhat sanitised historical origins. How can we explain his electoral successes?

Talking about Turkey also means acknowledging the issues which arise from a geopolitical stance akin to that of Putin’s Russia. East or West? Looking towards Europe or the Middle East? This brings us to the imprint of History: Turkish history is punctuated by shifts in focus between the Occident and the Orient. The idea is not new.

Talking about Turkey also means talking about relations with the Kurds, and by extension examining the ambiguous involvement of Ankara in the Syrian conflict.

A reception prepared and animated by Eric Valmir (France Inter), with Mathias Depardon, Jana Jabbour, Erol Önderoglu.


Pavillon Prix-Bayeux-Calvados
Place Gauquelin-Despallières
Doors open at 8 pm

Free Admission

Three receptions that will help you get a better understanding of current affairs.
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Sponsored by Direction Régionale des Affaires Culturelles.

October 6 2017