The Impact of Europeanization on Turkish Asylum Policy Through Conditionality

    • Cover Photo
    • Presentation speakers
      • Asli Bilgin, Faculty of Law, Cukurova University, Adana, Turkey


    Since the conflict began in 2011, an estimated 5 million people have fled Syria by land and sea in order to survive. Turkey has become a transition point for Syrians to reach Europe because of its geographic status between east and west. Not only the strict border protection implied by the EU but also the readmission agreement have transformed Turkey into an inn for Syrian refugees. Turkey has ratified 1951 UN Convention relating the Status of Refugees and its 1967 protocol with a geographical limitation that enables Turkey not to grant migrants coming from east, official refugee status. Today approximately over 3 million Syrians are currently registered in Turkey under the temporary protection regime which is adopted in 2014. Besides the temporary protection directive, the only national legislation that Turkey has adopted regarding the status of foreigners in Turkey is in 2013. Europeanization is a transformative power that the EU applies on domestic level of States interrelated with the EU via its legislation and the institutional structure. Since the candidacy period has begun, the impact of Europeanization is also inevitable for Turkey, such as Kurdish opening, abolishment of death penalty, recognition of non-Muslim religious minority foundations’ property rights, acceptance of broadcasting in other languages than Turkish etc. But the striking point on those developments is the timing. The Europeanization process seems to be more effective when the EU membership ‘reward’ seems reachable. This paper has two main aims. While analyzing the transformation of Turkish asylum policy in the light of Europeanization, the bound between the conditionality and the Europeanization would tried to be determined.