Prof. Dr. Ahmet Sözen Professor of International Relations, “A New Security Architecture for United Cyprus” March 07, 2017 (@BEA4, EMU)

Sözen - A New Security Arch

On March 7, 2017 Political Science and International Relations Department of Eastern Mediterranean University (EMU) has organized a seminar that took place at the BEA4 room (Old Senate Room) in the Eastern Mediterranean University. During the seminar, a professor of Political Science and International Relations at Eastern Mediterranean University (EMU), Prof. Dr. Ahmet Sözen, gave a speech on “A New Security Architecture for United Cyprus” that emphasized the importance of the security issue for the architecture of United Cyprus.

Sözen received his BA degree in 1991 from Bogazici/Bosphorus University (İstanbul, Turkey), his MA in International Relations in 1993 from Syracuse University (USA) and his PhD in Political Science (International Relations) in 1999 from the University of Missouri (USA). He is the founding Director of Cyprus Policy Center – a think tank within EMU. Besides his university work, Prof. Sözen is the founding Turkish Cypriot Co-Director of the UNDP funded program Cyprus 2015 which operated first under Interpeace and later became the first inter-communal think-tank called SeeD – Center for Sustainable Peace and Democratic Development. He is currently the Research Director of SeeD. His current research interests include: conflict resolution, peace-building processes, governance in multi ethnic societies, the Cyprus conflict and negotiations, Turkish foreign policy and democratization processes. Sözen has published extensively on the Cyprus conflict and Turkish foreign policy; and he is a frequent commentator of world events in local, Turkish and international media, such as BBC and Al Jazeera International.

Sözen mentioned to five main purpose and rationale of the security dialogue initiative as: firstly, the move away from win-lose security perceptions; secondly, to broaden and deepen the debate around security such; thirdly, to better understand and deliberate on the security; fourthly, to collect and develop alternative security arrangements; and, lastly but not leastly, to collect and develop alternative security arrangements. Sözen also pointed out to the propositions, including alternative security arrangements and dialogue with policy stakeholders, that were suggested for the solution of the security needs of people of Cyprus.

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Ahmet Sözen gave an interview to ‘Voice of America’ on current Geneva talks

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In  ‘Voice of America’ interview on current Geneva talks, Prof. Dr. Ahmet Sözen said that: “The current negotiators, two leaders of the island have reached a lot of convergences, a lot of agreements – on their own, more than any other negotiators in the past. They are very closed to finalize all the internal issues of Cyprus problem and then only one sticking issue lefts which is the external guarantees and external security of Cyprus – which involves the three guarantor states. That is Turkey, Greece and United Kingdom. So currently we are at that critical moment, if two leaders are able to finalize the internal issues of the Cyprus problem, then the responsibility and the willingness will be on the shoulders of three guarantor powers to make the necessary concessions on the external security and guarantees in order to end long lasting Cyprus problem.
Seems like, we have now two leaders of the island who have been pro-solution. They are aware that they are the last of the generation in fact who has the experience of the past where the communities used to live together. After this generation dies, because of the division, the new generations do not have the experience of living with the other in a mixed manner. Because the last fifty something years have been the division of the island. So we have two pro-solution leaders who are aware of this historical fact that if they cannot make it then it will be almost impossible for the new generations to solve the Cyprus problem in a bi-zonal, bi-communal federation where the two communities will live together.”

Amerika’nın Sesi’nin yaptığı bir mülakatta Prof. Dr. Ahmet Sözen şunları söyledi: “Şu anki görüşmeciler, adanın iki lideri birçok noktada yakınlaşma sağlamış, birçok anlaşma sağlamıştır – kendi başlarına, geçmişteki diğer görüşmecilerin herhangi birinden daha fazla. Kıbrıs sorunsalının iç meselelerini sonuçlandırmaya çok yakındırlar ve sürüncemede kalan konu sadece bir tane olup Kıbrıs’ın dış garantileri ve güvenliğidir – üç garantör devleti içerir. Bunlar Türkiye, Yunanistan ve Birleşik Krallıktır. Ve biz şu an kritik bir andayız. Eğer iki lider Kıbrıs sorunsalının iç meselelerini sonuçlandırmayı başarırlarsa, uzun süren Kıbrıs sorunsalını sonlandırmak için dış güvenlik ve garantiler konusunda gerekli imtiyazları vermek sorumluluğu ve isteği üç garantör devletin omuzlarında olacaktır.

Adada çözüm yanlısı olan iki lider var gibi görünmektedir. Geçmişte iki toplumun birlikte yaşadıkları tecrübeleri bulunan bir neslin son temsilcileri olduklarını farkındadırlar. Bu nesilden sonra, bölünmüşlük durumundan dolayı, yeni nesillerin diğer toplum ile karışık manada yaşama tecrübesi bulunmamaktadır. Son elli yılı aşkın süredir ada bölünmüş durumdadır. Eğer başaramazlarsa sonraki nesillerin Kıbrıs sorunsalını iki toplumun birlikte yaşadığı iki bölgeli, iki toplumlu bir federasyon temelinde çözmesinin neredeyse imkânsız olacağının bilincinde olan iki çözüm yanlısı lider vardır.”

EMU Cyprus Policy Center Addresses American Presidential Election Result

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A panel titled “The American Presidential Election and Its Result” was organized by the Eastern Mediterranean University (EMU) Cyprus Policy Center and the Faculty of Business and Economics, Department of Political Science and International Relations. The panel took place on the 10th of November 2016 at the EMU Prof. Dr. Mehmet Tahiroğlu Hall. American Embassy Politics and Economy Department Head Patrick Connell and EMU Department of Political Science and International Relations Chair Assoc. Prof. Dr. Erol Kaymak participated in the panel as speakers.

The panel was headed by Prof. Dr. Ahmet Sözen, Head of the EMU Cyprus Policy Center. In his opening speech, Prof. Dr. Sözen thanked those in attendance and noted that the panel will examine the different dimensions of the politics Republican Donald Trump might carry out after becoming the president of the United States of America (USA).

American Embassy Politics and Economy Department Head Patrick Connell gave the first speech at the panel. Connell started his speech by explaining the technicalities of the election system and went on to say that the legislation, jurisdiction and execution provided by the American constitution limit each other because of a separation of forces. Touching upon the American Presidential Elections with an institutional and historic perspective, Connell explained the workings of the system.

After Connell’s speech, EMU Department of Political Science and International Relations Chair Assoc. Prof. Dr. Erol Kaymak delivered a speech of his own in which he touched upon the difficulties of transition periods and provided a general analysis of the current predicament. Noting that the American presidential elections attract attention from the whole world, Assoc. Prof. Dr. Kaymak tried to explain what awaits us. Noting that Democratic Candidate Hillary Clinton’s defeat was a global suprise Assoc. Prof. Dr. Kaymak provided a reminder that the electoral college played a role Trump’s victory. Assoc. Prof. Dr. Kaymak noted that Trump’s victory will lead to polarization underlining international worry about the effects of Trump’s victory.

In the final part of the panel, Prof. Dr. Sözen asked whether or not Trump’s victory is part of a trend of populist politics, in line with other events such as Brexit and the Colombian referendum. The American presidential election is an important event worldwide because the politics of an American president has global effects.

Patrick Connell and Assoc. Dr. Erol Kaymak, “The US Elections and Results” November 10, 2016 (@Blue Hall, EMU)

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On November 10, 2016 Eastern Mediterranean University (EMU) Cyprus Policy Center (CPC) in collaboration with International Relations Department has organized a round table panel titled “American Presidential Elections and its Consequences”. CPC Chairman Prof. Dr. Ahmet Sözen chaired the panel. Director of the Politics and Economy Department of the United States Embassy Patrick Connell and EMU Political Sciences and International Relations Department Chair Assoc. Dr. Erol Kaymak appeared as speakers at the panel.

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EMU Cyprus Policy Center Head Prof. Dr. Ahmet Sözen Gives Presentation at Italian Senate

Eastern Mediterranean University (EMU) Faculty of Business and Economics, Department of Political Science and International Relations academician and Head of EMU Cyprus Policy Center, Prof. Dr. Ahmet Sözen gave a presentation in the Italian Senate, titled “Regional Reconciliation in the Eastern Mediterranean and Development of Energy Resources”.

The conference took place at the Senate of the Republic in Rome, as a result of collaboration between the Italian the Center for Peace in the Middle East (CIPMO), the International Affairs Institute (IAI) and the National Hydrocarbon Company, Ente Nazionale Idrocarburi (ENI).

During the conference, the technical aspects of discovering and extracting energy from important sources were discussed. In addition, the conference focused on the relationship between regional stakeholders as well as possible geostrategic results and transformations.

The opening speech of the conference was given by ENI Executive Director Claudio Descalzi. After the themed speech from Miguel Arias Canete, Energy and Climate Change Delegate of the European Commission, a speech was given by Paolo Gentiloni, Minister of Foreign Affairs. A speech was also given by Head of the Italian Senate Foreign Affairs Committee.

EMU Cyprus Policy Center Head Prof. Dr. Ahmet Sözen Gives Presentation at Italian Senate

Prof. Dr. Sözen started his speech by stating that whether natural resources are used as sources of conflict or cooperation, will impact whether or not an agreement will be reached. Prof. Dr. Sözen noted that stakeholders must unite their wisdom and power within legal framework. Acknowledging that this will not be easy, Prof. Dr. Sözen highlighted the fact that numerous inspirational examples that can be used as reference do exist.

Prof. Dr. Sözen stated that there is potential for cooperation in the Eastern Mediterranean region regarding hydrocarbon, before going on to note that maximum utilization is almost impossible because of the number, density and length disputes in the region.

Prof. Dr. Sözen emphasized at the Italian Senate that “The international community must strongly encourage the prevention of the 2017 hydrocarbon drillings until the negotiations are finalized as well as encouraging both leaders to swiftly find a solution to the Cyprus problem”.

Providing detailed information about approaches regarding what needs to be done, Sözen stated that the most beneficial methods must be chosen in order to meet ideals such as regional agreements. Specific to Cyprus, Sözen stated that potential risks should be eliminated and therefore hydrocarbon drillings delayed until after the finalization of negotiations.