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International Information Centre for Balkan Studies



This woman may be biggest opposition to Erdogan

After weeks of uncertainty and foot-dragging, the Appeals Court this week made a critical ruling, setting the stage for a potential shakeup in Turkish politics that may block President Recep Tayyip Erdogan’s drive for an executive presidency. The court gave the green light for the Nationalist Action Party (MHP) to hold a convention requested by in-house dissidents seeking to remake the party, whose erosion in recent years has played directly into Erdogan’s hands. Leading the dissidents is Meral Aksener, a rare female heavyweight on Turkey’s political scene, whose fortunes may now change not only the MHP’s but also Turkey’s course.

Read more: This woman may be biggest opposition to Erdogan

Macedonia President Part-Withdraws Pardons

President Gjorge Ivanov on Friday (27.06.2016) said he had partially retracted his controversial pardons of 56 persons, which has sparked mass protests and worsened Macedonia's political crisis.

Read more: Macedonia President Part-Withdraws Pardons

Croatia's MOST Backs Vice-PM's Impeachment

The Bridge of the Independent Lists, MOST, said it will vote to impeach Vice-Prime Minister Tomislav Karamarko, bringing the prospect of early elections nearer.

Read more: Croatia's MOST Backs Vice-PM's Impeachment

New minister: EU isn’t sole option for Turkey

Turkey’s relationship with the European Union is important but it is not the “only option” for Ankara, Ömer Çelik, Turkey’s new minister for EU affairs, said on May 25, 2016.

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Turkey: New PM signals shift in foreign policy: More friends than enemies

Turkey’s new prime minister, Binali Yıldırım, has signaled a comprehensive shift in foreign policy based on “earning more friends than enemies,” suggesting Ankara could restore ties with countries like Israel, Egypt and Russia in the near future. 

Read more: Turkey: New PM signals shift in foreign policy: More friends than enemies

PM Vucic Mulls Changing Serbian Constitution

Serbia's Prime Minister has hinted at the need to change Serbia's constitution as EU talks progress - and experts say he can probably count on a majority of MPs to get what he wants.

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New Turkish bill denounced as power grab

Turkey’s parliament on Friday (20 May 2016) adopted a highly divisive bill that will lift immunity for dozens of pro-Kurdish and other MPs and could see them thrown out of parliament.

Read more: New Turkish bill denounced as power grab

Turkey’s One-Man Show: Erdoğan’s Agenda After Davutoğlu

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan’s ouster of Prime Minister Ahmet Davutoğlu last week raises serious questions about Turkey’s political trajectory, its role in the Middle East, its relations with the European Community, and its participation in NATO.

Read more: Turkey’s One-Man Show: Erdoğan’s Agenda After Davutoğlu

Erdoğan’s Reckless Referendum Ploy

The Turkish Parliament on Tuesday held the first of two rounds of voting necessary to amend the constitution to lift parliamentary immunity for lawmakers. This move is merely the latest in President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan’s broader strategy of mobilizing nationalist sentiment against pro-Kurdish deputies in a bid to consolidate his own power.

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Montenegro Prime Minister Boycotts Own Reshuffle

Montenegrin Prime Minister Milo Djukanovic refused to address parliament and propose a new cabinet on Monday after opposition MPs insulted him in the chamber last Friday (13.06.2016).

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Macedonia Court Calls Halt to June 5 Elections

In a blow to plans by Macedonia’s ruling party to press on with elections on June 5, 2016, the Constitutional Court has ruled that the dissolution of parliament ahead of the polls was unconstitutional.

Read more: Macedonia Court Calls Halt to June 5 Elections

'War of Rallies' Underlines Bosnian Serb Divisions

Two parallel rallies, organized by ruling and opposition parties, passed without incident but underlined the tensions and deep political divisions among Bosnian Serbs.

Read more: 'War of Rallies' Underlines Bosnian Serb Divisions

Macedonia’s Albanian minority parties to join election boycott

Two Albanian political parties in Macedonia said yesterday (11 May 2016) they would join a boycott of parliamentary elections on 5 June, in order to protest government control over the media and state bodies, raising doubts about the viability of the poll.

Read more: Macedonia’s Albanian minority parties to join election boycott

Erdogan: Turkey will not become vegetarian lion

The change of the presidential system in Turkey is necessary, Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan said on Tuesday during a speech at the Union of Chambers and Commodity Exchanges of Turkey (TOBB).

Read more: Erdogan: Turkey will not become vegetarian lion

EP stops work on Turkey visa waiver

MEPs have stopped work on plans to give Turks visa-free access to the EU’s Schengen zone, putting a wider migrant deal in doubt.

Read more: EP stops work on Turkey visa waiver

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