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Turkish soccer brawls: the battle for the future of the Kemalist state

Turkish president Recep Tayyip Erdogan dresses up his increasing authoritarianism with nationalist and religious overtones, sparking battles over the future of the Kemalist state. Those battles, pitting nationalist and conservative forces against secularists and Kurds, are nowhere more evident than on Turkish soccer pitches. A series of incidents in recent months highlighted the mounting tensions …

James Dorsey

Turkish stadiums: a contested political battleground

  Last month’s opening of storied Istanbul soccer club Besiktas JK’s renovated Vodafone Arena stadium was laden with political symbols ranging from clashes between police and militant fans, to fans being banned from attending the opening, to Turkish president Recep Tayyip Erdogan using the event to his political advantage.   Celebrations of the opening reflected …

James Dorsey

Erdogan doesn’t deserve a Saudi red carpet

By Khalaf Ahmad Al Habtoor On Saturday, the Turkish President, Recip Tayyip Erdogan, is scheduled to begin a four-day visit to Saudi Arabia to hold talks with King Salman, who recently acceded to the throne following the passing of King Abdullah. There has been a flurry of media speculation that Saudi foreign policy could see …

Daily News Egypt

Turkish football: Illiberal President Erdogan’s latest victim

By James M. Dorsey Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan’s illiberal policies have targeted the media, the judiciary, the police, militant football fans, and anti-government protesters. Now they threaten to claim yet another victim: the game of football itself. In a major blow to troubled Turkish football, Yildiz Holding, a conservative conglomerate known for its confectionary and biscuit business and …

Daily News Egypt

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