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Hot Pursuit

Ahval

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Hot Pursuit

Hot Pursuit

Ahval

0
Followers
3
Plays
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Comments on Turkey’s top agenda...

Latest Episodes

'Conversion of Hagia Sophia will deal another severe blow to the foundations of secular Turkey' - Yavuz Baydar

Several Turkish government-linked columnists and talking heads said this week that Turkey's top court has already approved the re-conversion of the Hagia Sophia from museum to a mosque. These insider accounts have not been confirmed by an official decision yet.Turkey’s top administrative court, the Council of State, said it will make its ruling by or before mid-July, which also coincides with the fourth anniversary of the failed coup attempt of July 15, 2016. There is practically no opposition in Turkey to plans to re-convert the Hagia Sophia, one of the most important monuments of the Orthodox Christian church constructed in the 6th century during the Byzantine empire, into a mosque. Even the secular main opposition Republican People’s Party, (CHP) and a majority of Turks are either supportive of or indifferent to the idea. CHP leader Kemal Kılıçdaroğlu was even cited as saying there was no court ruling necessary for the conversion, that Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan could just issue a decree and be done with it.The presidential palace-linked columnists' and talking heads' predictions on the conversion might well be to test the waters before the final decision, Ahval's editor-in-chief Yavuz Baydar said on the Hot Pursuit podcast.Baydar expects that the top court will move the ball to Erdoğan's court, one way or another. What exactly Erdoğan expects to gain from the decision at this time is unknown. There appears to be no election planned in the next year or two. However, it could be a distraction from the fact that the Turkish economy has been in a dire situation due to the pandemic. Foreign tourism, the lifeline of the Turkish economy, is practically non-existent due to the COVID-19 pandemic that continues to haunt both Turkey and the world. Even though Turkey's official figures on pandemic infections and deaths are relatively good, the country’s non-transparent reports on the pandemic has undermined Turkey's credibility. There also remain some 20,000 active cases throughout the country, with most focused in Istanbul.The European Union, Russia, and most if not all Gulf states have restricted travel to Turkey until the end of the summer. There are not many optimistic scenarios in the near- or mid-term for Turkish economy to bounce back. If anything, the economic situation gets more dire every day. Therefore, it remains to be seen what such a historic decision - which cannot be seen as cultural war against a certain segment of society - could bring for Erdoğan. It is also too early to see how the re-conversion decision will resonate among the Turkish public, as the majority of the country continues to struggle economically.Baydar said in the podcast that the decision to convert the Hagia Sophia would deal another blow to the secular foundations of the country. Christian groups across the world and many Western countries, as well as the Russian government, have reacted negatively to the potential conversion. Russia feels especially sensitive to the decision due to its Orthodox population.The second big item on the agenda in Turkey this week was a set of amendments to a law which is clearly aimed at weakening powerful and often critical bar associations across the country by permitting the establishment of multiple lawyer associations in a given province. With these proposed amendments, the government expects to prop up new bar associations and likely pit them against each other, as well as supporting allied lawyer groups against independent ones. The Turkish judiciary, for all intents and purposes, has long been considered to be under the influence of Erdoğan, but the lawyers’ organisations have been able to maintain autonomy and critical stances so far. These amendments might cripple them as well.Baydar called the government’s move an extension of the "divide...

36 MIN2 d ago
Comments
'Conversion of Hagia Sophia will deal another severe blow to the foundations of secular Turkey' - Yavuz Baydar

'Erdoğan’s existential wars in the region unsustainable for Turkey'

Turkey's military operations across Libya, Syria and Iraqi Kurdistan are not financially, militarily and diplomatically sustainable, Ahval columnist and political scientist Cengiz Aktar, told in alongside Ahval editor-in-chief Yavuz Baydar and Ahval English's İlhan Tanır during a podcast on Monday.

11 MIN5 d ago
Comments
'Erdoğan’s existential wars in the region unsustainable for Turkey'

Lacking solutions to national crisis, Erdoğan using foreign adventures as decoy – Turkey expert

What does a regime change in Turkey signify for the world? Has the Turkish opposition lost its momentum to challenge President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan for good or are there further opportunities? Is the intervention in Libya the last straw that may spell the end of Erdoğan’s regime? Why do Erdoğan and Devlet Bahçeli continue gaining momentum in further tightening their grip over the country? What does U.S. President Donald Trump have to gain from his special relationship with his Turkish counterpart?

46 MIN1 w ago
Comments
Lacking solutions to national crisis, Erdoğan using foreign adventures as decoy – Turkey expert

'A gambit that may spell the end of Erdoğan regime?' - Prof Cengiz Aktar and Yavuz Baydar discuss Turkey's intervention in the Libyan crisis

Prof Cengiz Aktar and Yavuz Baydar discuss Turkey's intervention in the Libyan crisis.

39 MIN1 w ago
Comments
'A gambit that may spell the end of Erdoğan regime?' - Prof Cengiz Aktar and Yavuz Baydar discuss Turkey's intervention in the Libyan crisis

Steven Cook and Henri Barkey comment on Turkey - Egypt tensions and Libya crisis

Ahval's guests are Steven Cook and Henri J. Barkey on Hot Pursuit. They comment on the escalating tension between Turkey and Egypt over the power struggle in Libya.

51 MIN2 w ago
Comments
Steven Cook and Henri Barkey comment on Turkey - Egypt tensions and Libya crisis

Have Turkey's moves in the East Med, Libya passed a point of no return?

President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan’s military actions and drilling operations in the East Mediterranean challenge the status quo and appear to be setting in motion new dynamics in the region.Neighbour Greece is on high alert, raising its level of military preparedness. At the same time, there is a growing disarray within the European Union and NATO as to how to respond to what many Erdoğan critics see as his unlawful expansionism.The key global player, the United States, is also preoccupied domestically, with widening political differences between President Donald Trump and traditional American state institutions, and the upcoming presidential election. Ahval Editor Yavuz Baydar discusses the current East Med crisis and future prospects with two prominent Greek colleagues, Pavlos Tsimas of Skai TV and Yannis Koutsomitis of Kappa News, along with Cengiz Aktar, a professor and political commentator for Ahval News.

29 MIN3 w ago
Comments
Have Turkey's moves in the East Med, Libya passed a point of no return?

Erdoğan's priority is to keep turning the wheels of economy over virus

The priority of the Turkish government is to keep turning the wheels of the economy rather than taking necessary and urgent steps to tackle the spread of the deadly Coronavirus, said Ahval's editor-in-chief Yavuz Baydar during Ahval's Hot Pursuit podcast programme.

22 MINAPR 4
Comments
Erdoğan's priority is to keep turning the wheels of economy over virus

Nurcan Baysal interrogated by the police for her articles: 'They want to silence me entirely'

In what seems like an unexpected move, Nurcan Baysal, columnist with Ahval and a human rights activist, was called by the police in Diyarbakır to come to the headquarters in the city to be face accusations on 'inciting hatred' and 'threatening the public order' due to his two Ahval artticles and some tweets she posted in solidarity with her jailed colleagues. But, due to the absence of the prosecutor because of the Corona outbreak, she was demanded to be present again on March 31, the day after, to respond accusations. Detention pending, Baysal gave the following comment to Ahval Editor, Yavuz Baydar.

7 MINMAR 30
Comments
Nurcan Baysal interrogated by the police for her articles: 'They want to silence me entirely'

Yannis Koutsomitis: After Erdogan's failed talks with the EU, expect more war of attrition over refugees

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan failed to reach an agreement with European Union officials on the future of refugees living in Turkey as thousands of them attempting to reach Europe.Erdoğan held talks with European Council President Charles Michel and European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen on migration and the crisis in Syria on Monday."Neither side seemed happy with the result of a near two-hour meeting in Brussels, with Erdoğan leaving without speaking to the media, and senior EU officials warning there was a lot still to discuss, as they demanded Turkey continue implement their 2016 migrant deal," Bloomberg reported.Turkey signed a deal with Europe in 2016, agreeing to step up efforts to halt the flow of hundreds of thousands of refugees passing through the country and into Europe, mainly via Greece and Bulgaria, in return for EU funds. But Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan accused the EU of not keeping its side of the bargain, which included the trans...

12 MINMAR 10
Comments
Yannis Koutsomitis: After Erdogan's failed talks with the EU, expect more war of attrition over refugees

All eyes are locked on the Putin-Erdoğan meeting over Idlib on March 5 - Timur Göksel

All eyes locked on Russian President Vladimir Putin and his Turkish counterpart Recep Tayyip Erdoğan's meeting on March 5, Timur Göksel, senior editor-at-large at Ahval and former spokesman for the United Nations peacekeeping mission in Lebanon, told Ahval’s Hot Pursuit podcast programme.

13 MINMAR 3
Comments
All eyes are locked on the Putin-Erdoğan meeting over Idlib on March 5 - Timur Göksel

Latest Episodes

'Conversion of Hagia Sophia will deal another severe blow to the foundations of secular Turkey' - Yavuz Baydar

Several Turkish government-linked columnists and talking heads said this week that Turkey's top court has already approved the re-conversion of the Hagia Sophia from museum to a mosque. These insider accounts have not been confirmed by an official decision yet.Turkey’s top administrative court, the Council of State, said it will make its ruling by or before mid-July, which also coincides with the fourth anniversary of the failed coup attempt of July 15, 2016. There is practically no opposition in Turkey to plans to re-convert the Hagia Sophia, one of the most important monuments of the Orthodox Christian church constructed in the 6th century during the Byzantine empire, into a mosque. Even the secular main opposition Republican People’s Party, (CHP) and a majority of Turks are either supportive of or indifferent to the idea. CHP leader Kemal Kılıçdaroğlu was even cited as saying there was no court ruling necessary for the conversion, that Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan could just issue a decree and be done with it.The presidential palace-linked columnists' and talking heads' predictions on the conversion might well be to test the waters before the final decision, Ahval's editor-in-chief Yavuz Baydar said on the Hot Pursuit podcast.Baydar expects that the top court will move the ball to Erdoğan's court, one way or another. What exactly Erdoğan expects to gain from the decision at this time is unknown. There appears to be no election planned in the next year or two. However, it could be a distraction from the fact that the Turkish economy has been in a dire situation due to the pandemic. Foreign tourism, the lifeline of the Turkish economy, is practically non-existent due to the COVID-19 pandemic that continues to haunt both Turkey and the world. Even though Turkey's official figures on pandemic infections and deaths are relatively good, the country’s non-transparent reports on the pandemic has undermined Turkey's credibility. There also remain some 20,000 active cases throughout the country, with most focused in Istanbul.The European Union, Russia, and most if not all Gulf states have restricted travel to Turkey until the end of the summer. There are not many optimistic scenarios in the near- or mid-term for Turkish economy to bounce back. If anything, the economic situation gets more dire every day. Therefore, it remains to be seen what such a historic decision - which cannot be seen as cultural war against a certain segment of society - could bring for Erdoğan. It is also too early to see how the re-conversion decision will resonate among the Turkish public, as the majority of the country continues to struggle economically.Baydar said in the podcast that the decision to convert the Hagia Sophia would deal another blow to the secular foundations of the country. Christian groups across the world and many Western countries, as well as the Russian government, have reacted negatively to the potential conversion. Russia feels especially sensitive to the decision due to its Orthodox population.The second big item on the agenda in Turkey this week was a set of amendments to a law which is clearly aimed at weakening powerful and often critical bar associations across the country by permitting the establishment of multiple lawyer associations in a given province. With these proposed amendments, the government expects to prop up new bar associations and likely pit them against each other, as well as supporting allied lawyer groups against independent ones. The Turkish judiciary, for all intents and purposes, has long been considered to be under the influence of Erdoğan, but the lawyers’ organisations have been able to maintain autonomy and critical stances so far. These amendments might cripple them as well.Baydar called the government’s move an extension of the "divide...

36 MIN2 d ago
Comments
'Conversion of Hagia Sophia will deal another severe blow to the foundations of secular Turkey' - Yavuz Baydar

'Erdoğan’s existential wars in the region unsustainable for Turkey'

Turkey's military operations across Libya, Syria and Iraqi Kurdistan are not financially, militarily and diplomatically sustainable, Ahval columnist and political scientist Cengiz Aktar, told in alongside Ahval editor-in-chief Yavuz Baydar and Ahval English's İlhan Tanır during a podcast on Monday.

11 MIN5 d ago
Comments
'Erdoğan’s existential wars in the region unsustainable for Turkey'

Lacking solutions to national crisis, Erdoğan using foreign adventures as decoy – Turkey expert

What does a regime change in Turkey signify for the world? Has the Turkish opposition lost its momentum to challenge President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan for good or are there further opportunities? Is the intervention in Libya the last straw that may spell the end of Erdoğan’s regime? Why do Erdoğan and Devlet Bahçeli continue gaining momentum in further tightening their grip over the country? What does U.S. President Donald Trump have to gain from his special relationship with his Turkish counterpart?

46 MIN1 w ago
Comments
Lacking solutions to national crisis, Erdoğan using foreign adventures as decoy – Turkey expert

'A gambit that may spell the end of Erdoğan regime?' - Prof Cengiz Aktar and Yavuz Baydar discuss Turkey's intervention in the Libyan crisis

Prof Cengiz Aktar and Yavuz Baydar discuss Turkey's intervention in the Libyan crisis.

39 MIN1 w ago
Comments
'A gambit that may spell the end of Erdoğan regime?' - Prof Cengiz Aktar and Yavuz Baydar discuss Turkey's intervention in the Libyan crisis

Steven Cook and Henri Barkey comment on Turkey - Egypt tensions and Libya crisis

Ahval's guests are Steven Cook and Henri J. Barkey on Hot Pursuit. They comment on the escalating tension between Turkey and Egypt over the power struggle in Libya.

51 MIN2 w ago
Comments
Steven Cook and Henri Barkey comment on Turkey - Egypt tensions and Libya crisis

Have Turkey's moves in the East Med, Libya passed a point of no return?

President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan’s military actions and drilling operations in the East Mediterranean challenge the status quo and appear to be setting in motion new dynamics in the region.Neighbour Greece is on high alert, raising its level of military preparedness. At the same time, there is a growing disarray within the European Union and NATO as to how to respond to what many Erdoğan critics see as his unlawful expansionism.The key global player, the United States, is also preoccupied domestically, with widening political differences between President Donald Trump and traditional American state institutions, and the upcoming presidential election. Ahval Editor Yavuz Baydar discusses the current East Med crisis and future prospects with two prominent Greek colleagues, Pavlos Tsimas of Skai TV and Yannis Koutsomitis of Kappa News, along with Cengiz Aktar, a professor and political commentator for Ahval News.

29 MIN3 w ago
Comments
Have Turkey's moves in the East Med, Libya passed a point of no return?

Erdoğan's priority is to keep turning the wheels of economy over virus

The priority of the Turkish government is to keep turning the wheels of the economy rather than taking necessary and urgent steps to tackle the spread of the deadly Coronavirus, said Ahval's editor-in-chief Yavuz Baydar during Ahval's Hot Pursuit podcast programme.

22 MINAPR 4
Comments
Erdoğan's priority is to keep turning the wheels of economy over virus

Nurcan Baysal interrogated by the police for her articles: 'They want to silence me entirely'

In what seems like an unexpected move, Nurcan Baysal, columnist with Ahval and a human rights activist, was called by the police in Diyarbakır to come to the headquarters in the city to be face accusations on 'inciting hatred' and 'threatening the public order' due to his two Ahval artticles and some tweets she posted in solidarity with her jailed colleagues. But, due to the absence of the prosecutor because of the Corona outbreak, she was demanded to be present again on March 31, the day after, to respond accusations. Detention pending, Baysal gave the following comment to Ahval Editor, Yavuz Baydar.

7 MINMAR 30
Comments
Nurcan Baysal interrogated by the police for her articles: 'They want to silence me entirely'

Yannis Koutsomitis: After Erdogan's failed talks with the EU, expect more war of attrition over refugees

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan failed to reach an agreement with European Union officials on the future of refugees living in Turkey as thousands of them attempting to reach Europe.Erdoğan held talks with European Council President Charles Michel and European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen on migration and the crisis in Syria on Monday."Neither side seemed happy with the result of a near two-hour meeting in Brussels, with Erdoğan leaving without speaking to the media, and senior EU officials warning there was a lot still to discuss, as they demanded Turkey continue implement their 2016 migrant deal," Bloomberg reported.Turkey signed a deal with Europe in 2016, agreeing to step up efforts to halt the flow of hundreds of thousands of refugees passing through the country and into Europe, mainly via Greece and Bulgaria, in return for EU funds. But Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan accused the EU of not keeping its side of the bargain, which included the trans...

12 MINMAR 10
Comments
Yannis Koutsomitis: After Erdogan's failed talks with the EU, expect more war of attrition over refugees

All eyes are locked on the Putin-Erdoğan meeting over Idlib on March 5 - Timur Göksel

All eyes locked on Russian President Vladimir Putin and his Turkish counterpart Recep Tayyip Erdoğan's meeting on March 5, Timur Göksel, senior editor-at-large at Ahval and former spokesman for the United Nations peacekeeping mission in Lebanon, told Ahval’s Hot Pursuit podcast programme.

13 MINMAR 3
Comments
All eyes are locked on the Putin-Erdoğan meeting over Idlib on March 5 - Timur Göksel
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