Turkey Projects Soft Power in the Balkans

    Turkey is a rising regional power that holds a crucial role in the Balkans; it has been working to bring peace and stability to the region through state and non-state institutions.

    Apart from the EU, the U.S. and Russia, Turkey is also considered a crucial actor in terms of its ability to bring stability, peace and progress to the Balkans. Particularly, as Turkey redefines its socio-economic capabilities in the 2000s, the country also rediscovered its growing role in a forgotten region for Turkey, where Turkish legacy still remains a prominent element.

    Therefore, Turkey is expected to play a balancing role by prioritizing its cultural and historical ties in the face of ever-increasing influence of global powers in the Balkans. We contend that Turkish role as a balancing and stabilizing actor can be observed in the socio-economic, cultural and political fields.

    To conclude, Turkey may not be a major “play-maker” yet but Turkey is historically one of the most important actors in the Balkans. Turkey is probably the most debatable actor that is adored and detested at the same time by the people in the Balkans.

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