Moving Stones. Europe’s Neolithic Bridge: Anatolia

En bref

L'IFEA est un Institut de recherche français en Turquie. Dépendant du MEAE et du CNRS, il a pour vocation de faciliter, de fédérer et d'impulser des recherches en sciences humaines et sociales. C'est une structure de services et d'accueil des chercheurs. L'institut propose une programmation scientifique ouverte au public. 

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The Hizmet Movement as a softpower tool in the Kurdistan Region of Iraq:
between foreign policy and domestic politics

This presentation is an attempt to understand the articulation and interdependency existing between soft power and domestic politics. Our main hypothesis is that important interdependency links exist between domestic policies implemented on the state’s own territory and the soft power’s policy, especially in a context of strong transnational dynamics. In order to verify this hypothesis, we will study the role played by the Hizmet movement, and more specifically by the Fezalar schools, in the shaping of Turkish foreign policy towards the Autonomous Region of Iraqi Kurdistan. Indeed the evolution of Turkish foreign policy towards Iraqi Kurdistan determines the implantation of the movement. Besides, the Kurdish issue in Turkey is of great importance in understanding the implantation of the Hizmet movement in Kurdish populated areas on the two sides of the border. Beyond the issue of the eventual positive repercussion on Turkish soft power, it seems that the policy of the movement is participating to the increasing transnational dynamics of the region and contributes in this sense to blur the limits between foreign and domestic policies.  
 
Yohanan Benhaim is currently enrolled in a PhD program at Paris 1 Panthéon – Sorbonne University. He is based at the French Institute of Anatolian Studies (IFEA) in Istanbul which granted him an academic scholarship. His PhD thesis explores the evolution of Turkish foreign policy in Iraqi Kurdistan since the 1990′s to nowadays and its relations with the development in Turkish domestic politics.