Burhanettin Duran received his BA in Political Science and International Relations from Bogazici University in 1993, and his Ph.D. in Political Science from Bilkent University in 2001. He was a visiting scholar at George Mason University in 2010-2011. Prof. Duran has been focusing on the transformation of Islamism, Turkish Political Thought, Turkish Domestic Politics, Turkish Foreign Policy and Middle Eastern Politics. Currently Prof. Duran is a professor at Ibn Haldun University and General Coordinator of SETA Foundation. On 09th October 2018, Prof. Duran was appointed as member of Turkish Presidency Security and Foreign Policies Council.
Turkey’s party politics cannot seem to lose momentum. Two new political movements have recently emerged out of the ruling Justice and Development Party (AK Party). Now, the Republican People's Party (CHP), which just held its 37th Congress, faces the same possibility.
Tensions in the Eastern Mediterranean seem incapable of de-escalating. Although the situation on the Sirte-Jufra line in Libya remains under control thanks to Turkey’s diplomatic talks with the U.S. and Russia, last week’s explosion in Lebanon and the Greco-Egyptian maritime deal fueled tensions anew. Athens and Cairo recently announced that they had concluded an exclusive economic zone (EEZ) agreement, directly challenging Turkey’s November 2019 deal with Libya. As a matter of fact, Greek Foreign Minister Nikos Dendias did not hesitate to describe that agreement as “the opposite” of the Turkish-Libyan treaty.
Turkey’s most recent steps in Libya and the Eastern Mediterranean raised questions in foreign capitals about that country’s international standing. As Americans grappled with President Donald Trump’s call to delay the 2020 elections, the European media went berzerk over the Hagia Sophia’s reclassification as a mosque. On the one hand, they called on European leaders to respond to “Sultan” Recep Tayyip Erdoğan, whom they charged with neo-Ottomanist expansionism. At the same time, European reporters appreciate that Erdoğan has been filling the power vacuum that the United States left behind, empowering his country in the process. They also understand that the Turkish president, as an experienced leader, does what his European counterparts fail to do and takes his country to a new level of agency.
All eyes turned to Lebanon after Tuesday’s horrible explosion in Beirut. According to the Lebanese health minister, at least 154 people died in the accident and over 5,000 others survived with injuries. An estimated 200,000 to 300,000 citizens have been left homeless. Lebanon, where protests broke out in October over economic hardships, suffered a financial loss of between $10 billion and $15 billion from the explosion.
The Republican People’s Party’s (CHP) 37th Congress resulted in the strengthening of the already dominant politician, Chairman Kemal Kılıçdaroğlu, as he attempts to reshape the movement. Over the last decade, the main opposition leader has failed in every election yet increased his party’s ability to ally itself with his counterparts of choice with every passing day.