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Foreign Policy Centre

Ideas for a fairer world


Turks in Europe

[Cover of Turks in Europe]

Sarah Schaefer, Greg Austin, Kate Parker

September 2005

Download Turks in Europe (260 kilobyte PDF)

There is a new political contest about the relationship between the European Union and its 'national' components, and how they all should deal with 'outsiders'. The prospect of Turkey's entry to the European Union has triggered a remarkable outburst of fear and anxiety in some member states. Voters know that issues of national identity, the economy, social welfare and future migration are all tied up in some rather momentous way with Turkey's projected accession, but cannot see too clearly how. This pamphlet tries to bring the argument back down to the individual level.

At a personal level, what do the 'Turks in Europe' represent? How are they linked, if at all, to the issue of Turkey's accession to the European Union? There are as many answers to these questions as there are shades of political opinion. What we do know for sure is that the idea of Turkey being a member of the EU is not a welcome one for some Europeans.

This pamphlet finds more anxiety and fear about migration in general than about Turkey, but it suggests that those fears are channelled in public debate into the issue of Turkey's accession. Britain and the EU need to 'normalise cultural diversity' within an EU 'ideology' of migration, and that 'ideology' of migration must paint it as both inevitable and beneficial, at the same time as it contains prescriptions for channeling it and mitigating its equally inevitable negative effects.

Authors of the pamphlet include Sarah Schaefer (Europe Director at the FPC), Greg Austin (FPC Research Director), and Kate Parker (FPC Associate). Stephen Twigg, FPC Director, introduces the pamphlet in the Preface.