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The Role of Ethics Reform in Turkey's Bid to Join the European Union. Ms. Diane M. Janosek February 20, 2009 Ethics in the Intelligence Community 2009 International Intelligence Ethics Association . Presentation Agenda. European Union Turkey’s Global Engagements EU Accession Process

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The Role of Ethics Reform in Turkey's Bid to Join the European Union

Ms. Diane M. Janosek

February 20, 2009

Ethics in the Intelligence Community 2009

International Intelligence Ethics Association


Presentation Agenda

  • European Union
  • Turkey’s Global Engagements
  • EU Accession Process
  • Focus on Ethics Reform
  • Turkey’s Ethics Emphasis in 2008
  • Turkey’s Challenges
  • Turkey’s Ethics Reform as applied to Intelligence
  • Overall Takeaway & Questions

European Union

  • The EU is the world’s biggest trader in goods with thirty percent of the global market share-- more than the U.S., China or Japan.
  • EU stands as one entity to the World Trade Organization and with trading partners to maximize its influence on international scene.
  • EU membership represents to world European confidence in country’s ability transact business w/legal certainty and transparency.
  • 27 countries are EU members and these account for a third of global imports and exports. 21 are NATO members.

Republic of Turkey

Türkiye Cumhuriyeti

Since 1923, first to have political Islam background.

Spent 4 months in jail -political Islamism



Turkey’s Political and Global Engagement

  • Turkey is a democratic, secular, constitutional republic.
    • Full implementation is debated in and outside of Turkey
  • Political system was established in 1923
    • under leadership of Mustafa Kemal Ataturk
    • following fall of Ottoman Empire after World War I.
  • Turkey has become increasingly integrated with the West
    • through Council of Europe and NATO (since 1952).
  • Turkey 2005 full EU membership negotiations
    • associate member of the EEC since 1963
    • a customs agreement in 1995. Applied 1987.

Turks celebrate

AKP victory 2007; Erdogan

said "Our unity,

democracy and

republic have

emerged stronger

from the ballot box."



Turkey’s Economic Engagement

        • 15th Largest Economy in World
        • Member of G-20 Economic Summit
        • Istanbul: 4th city in world for # of billionaires
  • Russia/Turkey: Agreed to more trade and bilateral economic ties.
    • Non-oil Russian exports to Turkey in 2008 at $6 billion.
  • Unemployment figures: November 2008 reached 12.3%. 
    • 524,000 people lost jobs in last quarter of 2008.
    • 1 in 4 w/o jobs. 4th in world unemployment.
  • International Monetary Fund 2009 IMF loan program to Turkey.
    • Per IMF, Turkey had proven “relatively resilient.”
turkey s eu accession process
Turkey’s EU Accession Process
  • EU membership is two-fold:
      • -the expressed desire of the applicant country and
      • the acceptance by the existing EU voting members.
  • EU candidate country in 1999 (1999 Earthquake in Arkara).
  • Turkey introduced substantial human rights and economic reforms:
    • death penalty abolished
    • tougher torture codes & penal code overhauled
    • women's rights introduced
    • Kurdish culture, language, education and broadcasting permitted
  • EU accession talks 2005; Turkey agreed to recognize Cyprus as EU member.
  • Accession negotiations are expected to take about 10 years.
  • First EU investment was for corruption and ethics reform.

Corruption Perception Index 2008

  • CPI Score 10 clean of corruption
  • CPI Score 1 serious corruption



Turkey’s Focus on Ethics Reform for EU

  • Primarily, EU members concerned by Turkey’s level of corruption.
  • 2002 Turkey’s Corruption Perception Index (CPI) was 3.2.
  • 2006 Moved marginally, but more positively, to 3.8.
  • 2008 Turkey’s CPI was better, moving to 4.6 -- 46th worldwide ranking.
  • CPI survey respondents rated the level of corruption across nine categories: politicians, trade unionists, public officials, policemen, businessmen, judges, ordinary citizens, clergy/priests, and journalists.
  • Corruption includes making irregular payments to transact.
    • This interferes with customs agreements and tariffs.
    • Since EU’s aim is a “level playing field” for all, Turkey desires to improve.
  • Note: Turkey had same 2008 CPI score as Poland & Lithuania- EU members.

Source: 17 Feb 2009


Turkey’s Culture and Reform

  • 2008 KADEM Turkey Poll
  • most trusted/non-corrupt institutions:
    • #1 TURKCELL (mobile phone operator)
    • #2 Eastern Mediterranean University
    • #3 Koop Sut (a milk factory).
  • These three top picks show culture differences with West.

Ethics Reform:

Natural Tensions


  • Parliament
  • Judiciary
  • Police and Intel

Photos: BBC, Istanbul 22 July 2007



  • Corruption Accepted
  • Desire for Global Market Economy and Acceptance
  • High Expectations before Accession
  • Europe not yet comfortable with Turkey

EU’s Investment in Turkey’s Ethics Reform

  • February 2008: Summit in Ankara to initiate the project “Ethics for the Prevention of Corruption in Turkey.”
  • EU sponsored Turkey’s Ethics Council with 1.4 billion Euro in 2008.
  • Ethics is first area funded by the EU.
  • June 2008: The Turkish Economic and Social Studies Foundation (“TESEV”) published a 105 page book entitled “The European Code of Police Ethics and Vocational Socialization of Security Personnel in Turkey.”
  • EU sponsored Turkey’s training with 2 million Euro in 2009. Vocational training is second EU funded area.

EU Accession Reform Areas for Turkey:

Turkey’s Challenges

  • Corruption:EU desires ethics reform for Turkey across its judiciary,
  • military, parliamentary, and security apparatus.
  • Secularism:EU desires a demonstrated Turkish secular government as EU is a secular body with no formal connections/reference to any religion.
    • Ruling AK Party challenged by secularists for motivations.
  • Minority Rights: EU opposes minority persecution.
  • Kurdish-language broadcasts, banned for years, were introduced June 2004 for EU criteria on minorities. However, is common for radio and TV stations to have broadcasts suspended for airing sensitive material.



Corruption & Nexus to Intelligence

  • A connection between a country’s
              • corruption and intelligence services has
              • an established nexus.
  • When a country harbors abuse of power as evidenced by ongoing bribes by customs officials, how can onee be assured abuse of power is not occurring in the more secretive intelligence organization?
  • Misuse of intelligence information can and will harm both individuals and states’ national security.

Turkey’s Need for Intelligence Ethics

  • A security official can pass information to politicians, journalists or business competitors.
  • Intelligence can be misused to discredit or bribe politicians and leaders. Political rivals are tempted to use intelligence for selfish motives.
  • Threats of spying on certain activities or individuals can force inappropriate agreements and illegal payments. Corruption in intelligence collection and operations can lead to fatal misfortunes.
  • In a 2009 telephone monitoring incident, a voice record of the wife of a retired general, a suspect in the controversial Ergenekon case, was leaked to the Turkish press.
    • The incident puts Turkey’s communications and MIT in spotlight.
  • The MIT is Turkey’s National Intelligence Organization.
  • Source: “Turkish Intelligence Agency denies ‘Institutional’ ties to Ergenekon Defendant.” Istanbul NTV Online. 13 Jan 2009, accessible at

Turkey: Ethics & Intelligence

  • Wiretapping: January 2009
    • Constitutional Court overruled authority to officials or commission appointed by the prime minister to control the monitoring and recording phone calls by the National Intelligence Organization, police and gendarmerie. No oversight now. Much outcry over wiretapping.
  • Expected Misuse of Intelligence: 12 Feb 2009
    • Vakit columnist Abdurrahman Dilipak warns the court justices hearing the Ergenekon case, saying, "You have heard of the voice recording of Eruygur's wife, right?  You should not be surprised if your voice recordings find their way to the Internet tomorrow, too.”
  • Turkish media and citizens are skeptical of legitimate monitoring.

Sources: URL: 12 Feb 2009 and 14 Feb 2009.


Turkey’s Intelligence Ethics Reform

  • Challenges erupt when secret agencies given law enforcement authorities.
    • Allegiances, abuses and scandals can easily occur w/o intelligence oversight.
    • Countries are learning that they must maintain independent checks their intelligence activities and to conduct assessments. Example: Poland.
  • Turkey’s corruption reform efforts are prerequisite to a more robust
  • intelligence service and intelligence relationships.
    • Sharing of information must take place with trusted alliances.
    • Once corruption starts to decrease, ethics reform can take hold across the judiciary, military, parliamentary, and intelligence apparatus.

Turkey’s Intel Reform Efforts

15 Oct 2008 Turkey Announces Decision to combine Intelligence Efforts

  • Turkey lost 22 people in terror attacks in less than a week in 2008.
  • To fight against PKK terror, new division created to lead intelligence sharing between security forces
  • Expected to be chaired by civilian
  • Executives from the General Staff, gendarmerie, National Intelligence Organization (MIT) and the police department. 

Single Coordinator of Intelligence Sharing Memo:

“Ministry of Interior, the police, the MIT, the military police, soldiers … [all] should give a list of all departments incorporated within them. The Prime Ministry should then coordinate reorganization. In summary, Turkey should stop being a country where everybody is being taped, monitored and executed or punished without prior judgment.”



Turkey’s Intelligence Ethics Reform

  • EU focus Area: Improve Greek & Turkish relations
  • January 2009: Turkey’s Intelligence agency MIT approved
  • diplomat’s right to marry Greek national.
  • Facts:
  • Cengiz Fırat, a diplomat who also worked on the European Council, met Viki, a Greek citizen working at the Greek embassy in Paris.
  • A Turkish diplomat has to pass a strict assessment and investigation by the National Intelligence Organization/MIT to marry a foreigner.
  • Fırat is first Turkish diplomat to apply to marry a Greek, a country high on list of those threatening Turkey's national interests.

Source: Jan 13, 2009


EU’s Intelligence Ethics and Concerns with Turkey

  • EU’s Recognition of Intelligence Ethics
    • Intelligence is a growing international and domestic discipline.
    • Desires EU-wide standards for intelligence ethics.
    • EU must be assured partners share common intelligence ethics framework.
    • After the Madrid bombing in March 2004, EU established European Intelligence Coordinator to facilitate sharing of counterterrorist intelligence
  • EU’s Concern with Turkey’s Intelligence Ethics 2008:
    • Some EU members vetoed cooperative sharing agreement on the exchange of classified information between the EU and Turkey. (Turkish Policy Qtrly)
  • The hesitancy of EU countries to share and exchange their state secrets show a nation state’s national security interests come before global economic advances.

EU Status as of Feb 11, 2009:

  • EU’s European Parliament Committee on Foreign Affairs Concerns:
      • Non-fulfillment of Turkey's EU accession commitments by December 2009 would seriously affect process of negotiations.
      • EU regrets that freedom of expression and freedom of the press are still not fully protected in Turkey.
      • While no longer top issue, EU voiced concerns about Turkey's lack of progress in putting in place an anti-corruption strategy.
      • Voiced concerns in establishing civilian supervision of the military and parliamentary oversight of military and defense policy.
  • The report, however, should add momentum to Turkey- EU relations.
  • One EU participant stated, “Turkey needed some new systematic reforms. . . aimed at turning Turkey into a modern, democratic and prosperous country.”

Source: 17 Feb 2009

eu s high accession bar for turkey
EU’s High Accession Bar for Turkey \

Final Takeaway:

Ethics Reform is the critical underpinning of Turkey’s ability to take the necessary forward leaning actions for EU accession and for increased intelligence partnerships.

The EU stated on 11 Feb 2009: “Its political parties leaders must seriously seek dialogue and to agree, in a spirit of compromise, on a reform agenda for the modernisation of Turkey towards a stable, democratic, secular, pluralist and prosperous society, guided by respect for human rights and fundamental freedoms, and based on the rule of law.”

Source: 12 Feb 2009 EU Turkey Accession amendments (emphasis in original).

turkey s lady justice in arm wrestle
Turkey’s Lady Justice in Arm Wrestle

Feb 12, 2009 A cartoon by Osman Turhan shows Lady Justice sweating in an arm wrestling match with a criminal, implying that the Ergenekon network is going out of its way to prevent the justice system from prosecuting its members.





Council Background

Three different European bodies with the word 'council’:

The European Council This is the meeting of Heads of State and Government (i.e. presidents and/or prime ministers) of all the EU countries, plus the President of the European Commission. The European Council meets, in principle, four times a year to agree overall EU policy and to review progress. It is the highest-level policy-making body in the European Union, which is why its meetings are often called “summits”. 

The Council of the European Union Formerly known as the Council of Ministers, this institution consists of government ministers from all the EU countries. The Council meets regularly to take detailed decisions and to pass EU laws.

The Council of Europe This is not an EU institution. It is an intergovernmental organization based in Strasbourg, which aims (amongst other things) to protect human rights, to promote Europe's cultural diversity and to combat social problems such as xenophobia and intolerance. The Council of Europe was set up in 1949 and drew up the European Convention on Human Rights. To enable citizens to exercise their rights under that Convention it set up the European Court of Human Rights.


EU Background



  • European Parliament
  • Council of the European Union   - Presidency
  • European Commission
  • Court of Justice of the European Communities
  • European Court of Auditors
  • European Ombudsman
  • European Data Protection Supervisor

Financial bodies

  • European Central Bank
  • European Investment Bank   - European Investment Fund

Advisory bodies

  • European Economic and Social Committee
  • Committee of the Regions



Audiovisual and Media







Economic and Monetary Affairs

Education, Training, Youth

Employment and Social Affairs

Fisheries and Maritime Affairs

Food Safety

Foreign and Security Policy

Human rights

Humanitarian aid

Information Society

Institutional affairs

Internal Market

Public Health

Justice, freedom and security

Regional Policy

Research and Innovation







External Relations

External Trade

Fight against fraud


2009 EU Entry Issues Background

  • Additional EU entry issues are:
  • 1. The Turkey-Cyprus sovereignty dispute;
  • 2. The implications of the potential admission of a Muslim country into an historic non-Muslim European entity, and
  • 3. An ethnic issue surrounding Turkey’s treatment of minority groups. 1915 genocide Armenians
  • Feb 11, 2009: EU praised:
    • the launch of a Kurdish language television channel on Jan. 1, 2009.
    • Turkey's mediation efforts in the Middle East and the south Caucasus, notably following the conflict between Russia and Georgia.
    • EU Report welcomed: "the beginning of the trial against those accused of being members of the Ergenkon criminal organization", and encouraged "the authorities to continue investigations and to fully uncover the organization's networks which reach into state.”
  • EU Focus Area: Religion: Feb 2009 Report Amendment states EU is concerned by the ongoing ‘polarisation’ within Turkish society and between the main political parties, deepened in the course of 2008 and negatively affected functioning of the political institutions and the process of reforms; stresses that this could create obstacles to a successful EU accession process; calls on the Turkish government to adhere to secular principles and to refrain from religious motivations; recalls that the government should represent Turkish society as a whole& repeal Article 301.
  • The European members are concerned that Turkey will have Arab preferences,
  • not European preferences on multiple global issues,
  • and therefore may not reach ‘full democratization.’

Background: Turkey’s Ethics Reform

  • One of the criteria for Turkish membership that has been imposed by the EU is that the country effect ethics reform.
  • The Ethics Council was established in Turkey to play a role in creating a transparent and accountable public administration. The Council of Europe would play a role in the Ethics Council as well, by assisting in its start-up providing technical support and assistance in its asserting its leadership role.
  • ETHICS VERSES MORALITY: TESEV publication states that morality, related to the word creation, implies that the good values of humans result from their nature, but moral principles are “local and relative, whereas ethical rules are universal.” Therefore people can produce different, even conflicting, ethical rules as a result of socialization in different societies and time periods. Ethical rules will have secular characteristics as they are established based upon the needs of different professions, not merely religion. Therefore a code of ethics is important even in a country with a majority religion.

Source: 17 Feb 2009


Current Events

  • Penal Code 301: Acrime to insult Turkish national identity. Used to prosecute journalists and publishers.EU wants abolished 2009.
  • Stand-off with the secularists: March 2008 Constitutional Court only narrowly rejected a petition by the chief prosecutor to ban the governing Justice and Development Party (AKP) and 71 of its officials, including President Abdullah Gul and Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan, for allegedly seeking to establish an Islamic state. EU wants review in 2009 to ensure no harboring of a secret agenda to turn Turkey into a religious society.
  • Ergenekon Criminal Charges: EU wants fair trial of participants in 2009
  • Religion: Turkey is secular country- 75 million citizens are Muslim, while Christians number 100,000. EU has been following and asserts 2009 must be better for religious minorities (for example, prosecute murderers of Christians & priests).



Turkey’s Challenges- Compliance with EU

  • EU desires both civilian control of Turkish military to demonstrate democracy and legitimacy.
  • Problem of ‘link’ between criminal outfit and JGK’s intelligence unit.
  • Turkey's Gendarmerie General Command (JGK) has long been under scrutiny to rehabilitate itself and act under the orders of the civilian authority and not the Turkish military. In times of war okay to operate under Turkish Armed Forces (TSK) but does in daily operations (budget, promotion, training).
  • JGK's reputation is tainted by its association to the clandestine JITEM, the intelligence unit of gendarmerie with a denied existence. Retired Gen. Veli Kucuk, who was jailed early last year after he was captured in a police raid to crack down on a gang known as Ergenekon, said in a statement that he was the founder of JITEM. JITEM is allegedly linked to 7,000 unsolved murders in the country.

Source: 17 Feb 2009


Cyprus Background

  • Cyprus Issue: A significant but unresolved issue that pertains to accession is Turkey’s recognition of Cyprus. In 1974, Cyprus was divided into the Greek Cypriot south and Turkish Cypriot north when Turkey sent troops to take control of one third of the island following a failed Greek Cypriot coup seeking union with Greece.
  • Turkey refuses to recognize Cyprus’ Greek Cypriot government, which represents the whole of the island in the EU. Ankara supports a Turkish Cypriot breakaway state in the north of the Mediterranean island. While Ankara refuses to negotiate with the Cyprus government, it did fulfill its obligation to the EU and extended its customs union to all EU bloc members and Cyprus.
  • Note the other complication is that the Republic of Cyprus is recognized by the EU; all EU members must recognize each other.

Backup: EU’s Police Ethics Emphasis in 2009

  • Feb 17, 2009 EU Project To Train Gendarmerie on Human Rights
  • Tibor Varadi, deputy head of the delegation of the European Commission to Turkey, said on this occasion that the big challenge for Turkey during the accession process is to create stable institutions that are able to deliver their services, including security, to the citizens in respect of democratic principles and human rights.
  • The functioning of the gendarmerie -- a law enforcement agency responsible for 92 percent of Turkey's territory -- will not only be important throughout accession negotiations but also afterwards, as it will be one of the institutions in charge of implementing an important part of the acquis, Varadi added.
  •  In the report, the committee called on the Turkish government "to prove its political will to continue the reform process“ committed to in 2005.
  • Full name:Republic of Turkey
  • Population: 75.8 million (UN, 2008)
  • Capital: Ankara Area: 300,948 sq miles
  • Major language: Turkish Major religion: Islam
  • Monetary unit: Turkish lira Main exports: Clothing and textiles, fruit and vegetables, iron and steel, motor vehicles and machinery, fuels and oils