The Middle East in Transition
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The Middle East in Transition

The Centrality of Citizenship

Edited by Nils A. Butenschøn and Roel Meijer

The violent transitions that have dominated developments since the Arab Uprisings demonstrate deep-seated divisions in the conceptions of state authority and citizen rights and responsibilities. Analysing the Middle East through the lens of the ‘citizenship approach’, this book argues that the current diversity of crisis in the region can be ascribed primarily to the crisis in the relations between state and citizen. The volume includes theoretical discussions and case studies, and covers both Arab and non-Arab countries.
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Chapter 12: Citizenship and migration diplomacy: Turkey and the EU

Peter Seeberg


The chapter analyses the challenges for Turkey and the EU in dealing with the migration crisis in a citizenship perspective, arguing that the migration crisis has resulted in a higher level of interdependence between Turkey and the EU. The main Turkish interests are to integrate the refugees in society in order to avoid social problems and conflicts with the Turkish population, and to acquire funds from the EU to cover the expenses related to the work. The EU shares the Turkish interest in maintaining an inclusion strategy, since this ideally leads to a situation where the majority of the refugees stay in Turkey. In a short-term perspective, the lack of a clear and well-defined status for the refugees in Turkey is seriously affecting their citizenship rights. In the long run, the external dimensions become more striking, where the lack of solidarity between the EU member states has consequences for the citizenship regime.

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