This report examines and provides an introduction to the decision to hold the elections early and the platforms and candidates that the major political parties are putting forward in the June 2018 elections. As noted, there are a number of candidates for the presidency from the AK Party, the CHP, MHP, HDP, IYI Party, SP, and other parties. In the parliamentary elections, there are two major electoral alliances, a new feature in Turkish elections.
This is the third issue of the annual European Islamophobia Report (EIR) consisting of an overall evaluation of Islamophobia in Europe in the year 2017, as well as 33 country reports which include almost all EU member states and additional countries such as Russia and Norway. This year’s EIR represents the work of 40 prominent scholars and civil society activists from various European countries.
In numerous European countries, there has been a wave of prohibitions against Islamic practices ranging from ritual animal slaughter to the building of mosque minarets, from male circumcision to women’s headscarves.
The report presents a one-year assessment of the Operation Euphrates Shield (OES) launched on August 24, 2016 and concluded on March 31, 2017 and examines Turkey’s future road map against the backdrop of the developments in Syria. In the first section, the report analyzes the security environment that paved the way for OES. In the second section, it scrutinizes the military and tactical dimensions and the course of the operation, while in the third section, it concentrates on Turkey’s efforts to establish stability in the territories cleansed of DAESH during and after OES. In the fourth section, the report investigates military and political lessons that can be learned from OES, while in the fifth section, it draws attention to challenges to Turkey’s strategic preferences and alternatives - particularly in the north of Syria - by concentrating on the course of events after OES.
We hope that the findings from this report will help inform Turkish policymakers, school leaders, teachers and partners in the international community as they work together to ensure no refugee child is without education.