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Mevlut Cavusoglu: A Diplomat for Hard Challenges | ASHARQ AL-AWSAT English Archive 2005 -2017
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Mevlüt Çavuşoğlu

Ankara- The appointment of Mevlut Cavusoglu to head the Turkish Ministry of Foreign Affairs twice in 2015 can’t be separated from the political frame of the policy adopted by the AKP-Justice and Development party since 2003.

Cavusoglu was appointed as a Minister of Foreign Affairs for the first time on 29 August 2014 to succeed Ahmet Davutoglu, who was elected the president of the AKP and after the election of Recep Tayyip Erdogan as the country president on the 10th of August. At that time, Cavusoglu had left his position as Minister of State Affairs and senior negotiator with the EU since 2013, while many voices in Turkey were calling for a change in their country’s foreign policy adopted since 2007 and led Turkey to a sort of seclusion among the neighboring countries.

*The beginnings

Cavusoglu remained a Minister of Foreign Affairs for two years before he waived this position following AKP’s failure in the elections of June 2015 in winning a majority, which obstructed it from forming a one-sided government.

One of the main deadlocks during this phase was the Turkish failure in gaining one of the non-permanent seats in the U.N.’s Security Council during the session of October 2014.

According to observers, the confusion appeared with the launch of the Arab Spring and the Turkish position and its intervention in many affairs of Arab countries based on the old Ottoman perspective.


In fact, with these political regressions, Mevlut Cavusoglu was obliged to walk amid a minefield; the Turkish-Russian relations were tensed, relations with Israel were almost frozen, relations with Iran and Iraq were paralyzed, communication broken with Egypt, enmity with the regime of Bashar Al-Assad, and problems with the United States and The European Union.

All these circumstances and complications pushed Cavusoglu to seek solutions. In June, Turkey has succeeded in putting an end to the tension with Russia and succeeded in resuming normal relations with Israel.

However, Ankara’s relations with Egypt are still tense, while some hope appeared in its communication with Iran, particularly concerning the Syrian crisis.

*More crises

The Prime Minister has faced more crises; he had to make all his efforts to deny the allegations launched by Russia and Iran concerning his country’s support to ISIS and its oil trade with the group. However, the Turkish military operation that has kicked off on the 24th of August to eradicate ISIS on the Turkish-Syrian border has fulfilled this goal.

Cavusoglu also faced many foreign campaigns from countries like Austria and Germany following the failed coup attempt, the suspension of the EU’s Chart for Human Rights and calls for travel ban to Turkey.

Following the same attempt, the Minister had to communicate and convince many countries to close the educational institution of Fethullah Gulen, accused for supporting the coup attempt of July.

Cavusoglu currently works on facing all these political crises by manipulating the foreign policy and changing it back to the main principles on which the Modern Turkish Republic was founded by Mustafa Kemal Atatürk.

These principles include laying down peaceful regional and international grounds that bring prosperity and stability tn Turkey and the neighboring countries. No doubts, these missions will be hard amid the changing circumstances in the region, but Cavusoglu seems to be courageous and keen to move toward achieving the required success.

*Mevlut Cavusoglu: Biography

-He is an academic, politician, and diplomat and has been one of the AKP founding members.

– He was born on the 5th of February 1968 in Alanya, Antalya.

– He is a Member in the Parliament for Antalya and has maintained this position for three successive sessions.

– He is married and has one child; he speaks English, German, and Japanese.

-He has earned his Political Science bachelor’s degree from Ankara University in 1988, and a Masters in Economics from Long Islands University in New York.