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CIC National Capital (Ottawa): What’s Next for Turkey?

March 8, 2018 @ 7:00 pm - 9:00 pm EST

Please note this event has been cancelled.




Event Description

This event is being organized by the CIC National Capital Branch’s Middle East Study Group.

According to media reports, the ongoing crises in the Middle East has thrown a spot light on Turkey as a NATO member and a major power broker in the region. In the current atmosphere of overlapping interests, mistrust and confrontation, there is real danger of more volatility with repercussions for other NATO members, such as Canada, as well as peace in the Middle East and arguably in Europe. The key question remains can Turkey stop its military posturing and participate in a results-oriented security dialogue to end the conflicts, and seize opportunities for cooperation with other players in the region?

A majority ‘yes’ vote in the April 2017 Turkish referendum regarding proposed constitutional changes will see Turkey move to a presidential system after parliamentary and presidential elections take place in November 2019. In the meantime, the current Turkish government continues to face many pressing foreign policy and domestic challenges. The current situation in Syria, for example, is not what Ankara forecasted when it threw its support behind the Syrian opposition back in 2012. More recently, a war of words with several EU members has brought Turkey’s EU aspirations to a virtual standstill. The relationship between Ankara and Washington has also reached an historical low point. Closer to home, the longstanding war with the Kurdish PKK is not likely to end anytime soon and in the aftermath of the July 2016 attempted military coup a state of emergency remains in effect.

Dr. Chris Kilford will discuss the wide-ranging challenges facing Turkey and what the future may hold in store.

Speaker Biography

During his 36-year military career in the Canadian Armed Forces, Chris Kilford served throughout Canada, Germany, Afghanistan and Turkey in various command, instructional and staff roles. From July 2009 until July 2010, he was posted to the Canadian Embassy in Kabul, Afghanistan as the Canadian Deputy Military Attaché (Lieutenant Colonel) and then to the Canadian Embassy in Ankara, Turkey as the Canadian Defence Attaché (Colonel) from July 2011 until August 2014. Chris retired from the Canadian Armed Forces in September 2014.

Chris completed a PhD in history with a focus on development at Queen’s University in 2009 and his dissertation, published in 2010, discussed civil-military relations in the developing world in the post-colonial period. In addition to his civilian academic qualifications he is a graduate of the Advanced Military Studies Course and holds an equivalency for the Canadian Armed Forces year-long National Security Program. Today, he is a Fellow with the Queen’s Centre for International and Defence Policy, a Research Fellow with the Conference of Defence Associations Institute, President of the Canadian International Council, Victoria Branch and a sessional instructor with the Royal Military College and the Canadian Forces College teaching distance learning courses on political geography and global powers and institutions.

His articles and opinion pieces on Canadian defence and foreign policy issues plus Turkish and Middle Eastern matters have appeared in numerous Canadian and international publications and he has become a frequent commentator for CTV and other media outlets.


There is no fee to attend this event, however, advanced registration is required. To register please contact Hamid Jorjani at hjorjani@bell.net.


March 8, 2018
7:00 pm - 9:00 pm EST
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Institute on Governance
60 George Street
Ottawa, Ontario K1N 1J4 Canada
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CIC National Capital (Ottawa) Branch