Why do we care about a failed coup in Turkey?

Turkey is seen as a key state and a bridge between Europe and Asia. Its large population, emerging economy and powerful military make it an important partner for dozens of countries in trade and security.

dpa outlines why changes in Turkey's political situation could have an impact well beyond its borders.

EU MEMBER HOPEFUL

Turkey has been a candidate for membership in the European Union since 1999, and its application has been negotiated in concrete terms since 2005. If the country were to become an EU member today, it would be the poorest but second-largest country by population in the bloc.

BRIDGE BETWEEN EUROPE AND MIDDLE EAST

As a neighbour of Greece and Bulgaria to the west and Syria and Iraq to the south, Turkey is a bridge from the EU's external borders and the major conflict regions in the Middle East.

Its unique geopolitical position has allowed Turkey to play a significant role in Europe's migration crisis and in Syria's multi-sided civil war. The country has taken in approximately 2.7 million Syrian refugees, according to its own data, and Turkish airstrikes continue to target Kurdish sites in Syria.

NATO MEMBER

Turkey joined the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) in 1952. With around 640,000 soldiers and civilian staff, the Turkish military is one of the largest in the world and continues to be strengthened by the stationing of NATO-member troops within its borders.

Within the framework of NATO's policy of nuclear deterrence, nuclear weapons are thought to be stationed at south-eastern Turkey's Incirlik air base.

Last update: Sat, 16/07/2016 - 15:54
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