Turkey Info Sheet


Capital: Ankara

Government: Parliamentary Republic

President: Recep Tayyip Erdogan

Prime Minister: Ahmet Davutoglu

Majority Party: Justice Development Party

Population: 79,000,000

  • additionally 2.5 million refugees from Syria and Iraq


Religion: (2012)

  • Islam 97% (primarily Sunni)


  • Shelters Free Syrian Army
  • Allows rebel fighters, arms shipments and refugees to pass through its territory
  • Allows US-led coalition against IS to use its air bases


Political Associations:

  • Member of NATO
  • Turkey has no strong Middle Eastern ties
  • Regional “Allies”: EU, Saudi Arabia, Jordan



  • Security Issues:
    • Terrorism: Recent IS attacks
    • Border control
    • Economic stability
  • Fears Kurdish (both in Turkey and in the region), Iranian and Russian expansion
  • Provide refugee support in refugee camps; estimated USD 10 billion since 2011; with some UNHCR funding (2015: USD 320 million)


  • Kurds are the largest ethnic minority in Turkey and fairly undocumented; anywhere from 16-30% Turkey’s population
  • Most Turkish Kurds are in Southeast Turkey
  • President Erdogan asked Washington to choose between Turkey and the Kurdish People’s Protection Units (YPG) in Syria