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Erdogan's World Tour: Balancing Between Unipolarity and Multipolarity

Erdogan's World Tour: Balancing Between Unipolarity And Multipolarity
President Erdogan, fresh from narrowly winning a controversial constitutional referendum, is embarking on a world tour which will take him to India, Russia, China, the US, and NATO.

His first visit will be to New Delhi, where he will attend a business summit and focus on fostering economic ties between his nation and the South Asian giant. Afterwards, he’ll jet over to Sochi on 3 May to meet with President Putin in a gathering which will surely be more about Syria than anything else. Once he’s done taking care of affairs in the Russian seaside resort, the Turkish leader will then move to the opposite side of Eurasia to participate in the Belt and Road Forum being hosted in the Chinese capital. He’ll likely also rub shoulders with dozens of fellow world leaders who also plan to be in attendance.

Afterwards, President Erdogan’s world tour will take on a distinctly different tone as he transitions out of the multipolar realm and into the unipolar one, going straight from shaking hands with President Xi to flying across the Pacific to meet with President Trump in the US. This will be their first face-to-face meeting and both leaders will certainly have a lot to talk about, be it their contradictory positions on the Syrian Kurds, the Race for Raqqa, or the Immigrant Crisis. The Turkish President might also expectedly be asked about his relations with his Russian and Chinese counterparts, too, which have probably drawn the concern of many American strategists by now. After being received in the capital of the unipolar world, President Erdogan will leave DC and head straight to Brussels for the final leg of his trip in order to attend a NATO meeting.

All in all, the Turkish leader will be carrying out a very delicate balancing act across the coming month as he seeks to walk a fine line between the multipolar realms of Russia and China and the unipolar ones of the US and NATO, while starting off somewhere in between the two during the first leg of his trip in India. President Erdogan might also be hoping that the broad international support which he expects to receive during his world tour could also help soothe over the deep domestic divisions prevalent in his country after the latest referendum.

Engin Ozer, political analyst and expert on Russian-Turkish relations and Serap Balaman, Turkish political commentator shared their views.

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