Is Türkiye's axis shifting?

LEVENT YILMAZ,  Thursday 09:52, 22 September 2022

Whenever Türkiye makes an appearance or makes a positive statement at a meeting on alliances in the East, discussions of an "axis shift" immediately begin. Western countries, which have steered clear from Türkiye in normal times, and as soon as Ankara makes positive use of the East, remember that Türkiye should immediately become a part of the Western alliance. Of course, some of our intellectuals (!) immediately begin to tow that line.


The Shanghai Cooperation Organization is an entity made up of countries that cover 40% of the world's population and more than 30% of the global gross domestic product. Currently, SCO member countries include China, Russia, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan, Uzbekistan, Pakistan, India and Iran. The organization prioritizes cooperation in security, economic and cultural fields.

Meanwhile, one of the most important missions of the SCO is to build a more balanced environment instead of the unipolar world order created by the U.S.-led Western hegemony.


Türkiye is not a member of the SCO. It is currently one of the 6 current dialogue partners. However, Türkiye's position at the last SCO meeting, and even personal interest in Erdogan, has increased expectations for membership. On the other hand, at a time when the world's economic center of gravity is moving rapidly from the West to the East, it cannot be considered as a wrong strategy to take the relations with the SCO to the next level.


After the last SCO meeting, Türkiye took one step closer to membership status, and the "axis shift" discussions started immediately. Certain mechanisms and their internal extensions are trying to convince Türkiye that it has to make a choice. However, Türkiye can still be a member of the SCO as a candidate country for the EU, which is a NATO member. In the comments made by ignoring the fact that Türkiye should make decisions based on its own interests, the "two-faced" attitudes of the West towards Ankara have been laid bare.

The attitudes of the Western alliance towards Türkiye are obvious. The number of bad examples on this subject is so high that even people who are unfamiliar with the subject can list at least 2-3 of them at once. However, despite all this, Türkiye's diplomatic initiatives continue to position its relations with the West on a balanced basis. Meanwhile, it is unthinkable for Türkiye to be a mere spectator of what is happening in the East. Negotiations with the SCO should also be evaluated in this context.


President Erdogan went to New York for the UN Summit right after attending the SCO Summit in Uzbekistan. We saw that Erdogan repeated his legitimate objections to the structure of the UN in his speech. Moreover, Türkiye is doing this right after the SCO meeting led by Russia and China, the two members of the UN Security Council with 5 permanent members. This attitude is actually quite sufficient for those who want to understand Türkiye's stance.

In addition, the book titled “UN Reform: A New Approach to International Cooperation,” published by the Directorate of Communications, is of great importance in outlining this vision in order to better understand Türkiye's criticisms of the structure of the United Nations and proposals for solutions.

NavigationSee Other Columns