From Eastern Europe to Western China

The Growing Role of Turkey in the World and Its Implications for Western Interests

by Graham Fuller

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This report summarizes many of the broad findings of the project's previous regional papers and reviews those findings from the point of view of Western and American interests. Turkey has been among those states most sharply affected by the changing international environment. Long isolated on the periphery of Europe in geopolitical terms, Turkey now lies at the center of a rapidly evolving Turkic region stretching from the Adriatic to western China, a region in which Ankara is likely to be a key factor. The resulting challenges and opportunities for Turkish foreign and security policy will have an important influence on the way Turkey sees itself and deals with others, including the European Community. Against this background, bilateral relations with the United States will take on increased significance. At the same time, the potential for bilateral friction on regional security issues may expand.

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