500+ participants / 80+ speakers / 20+ panels

Side events

Day 2

18:00 – 19:00
(parallel sessions)

Türkiye in the Balkans: Security Provider or Instability Exporter?

There has been much discussion of the presence of non-Western powers in the Balkans.  Türkiye has been among them. The prevailing narrative surrounding Türkiye often portrays it as having ambitions to re-establish influence in its former Ottoman territories, supporting local Muslim communities or promoting authoritarian politics among others. However, Türkiye’s role is more complex as its interactions with the region are shaped by history, culture, and geography. Unlike Russia and China, Türkiye is partially aligned with the West, by being a member of NATO and an EU membership candidate with a free trade agreement with the EU. Building on the findings of the Belgrade Centre for Security Policy’s paper “Between Emotions and Realism: Two faces of the Turkish Foreign Policy in the Balkans”, this roundtable disucssion will deal with strategic considerations shaping Ankara’s foreign policy in the Balkans, the current challenges facing both  Türkiye and the Balkans, and potential future trajectories.

Birgül Demirtaş
Srđan Hercigonja



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