Contractual Obligations in Turkey's Foreign Policy Crises: The Cyprus and Nakhchivan Crises

AKSU F., Colak Y.

BILIG, no.88, pp.19-54, 2019 (SSCI) identifier identifier

  • Publication Type: Article / Article
  • Volume: Issue: 88
  • Publication Date: 2019
  • Doi Number: 10.12995/bilig.526759
  • Journal Name: BILIG
  • Journal Indexes: Social Sciences Citation Index (SSCI), Scopus, TR DİZİN (ULAKBİM)
  • Page Numbers: pp.19-54
  • Istanbul University Affiliated: Yes


This article aims to articulate contractual obligations in Turkish foreign policy crises with a focused of Cyprus and Nakhchivan cases. Pacta sunt servanta, status quo, peace, are largely and well-preserved principles in Turkish foreign policy. Turkey put a great afford and utmost care to protect the legitimacy of status quo in the event of any fait accompli resulted various diplomatic crises. The status [quo] which was defined in previously structured contractual obligations can only be terminated via negotiations between signed parties. Moreover, these negotiations can also structure a new status quo accordingly. In the event of termination or de facto violation of contractual obligations, the possibility of any future negotiations will collapse. As seen in the crises of Cyprus and Nakhchivan, this fact may trigger potential (military) conflicts between parties. The extreme sensitivity of Turkey to its own border security, territorial integrity and contractual obligation is also evident when it comes to the contractual obligations outside the territorial boundaries. In such cases, Turkey does not hesitate to resort coercive diplomacy strategies and use of power. Thus, this gives Turkey the opportunity to resolve those crises without evolving into a war.