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Explaining change in Greek policy on EU-Turkey relations 1996-1999: The Prime Minister's leadership style and the formulation of the Helsinki strategy.

Moumoutzis, Kyriakos (2009) Explaining change in Greek policy on EU-Turkey relations 1996-1999: The Prime Minister's leadership style and the formulation of the Helsinki strategy. PhD thesis, London School of Economics and Political Science (United Kingdom).

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Abstract

In December 1999 during the Helsinki European Council summit Greece consented to the Turkish candidacy for EU membership in what has been greeted as a remarkable shift in Greek policy towards Turkey. The argument of this thesis is that the so-called "Helsinki strategy" constituted the culmination of Greek Prime Minister Simitis' attempts to pursue what he referred to as the "communitisation" of Greco-Turkish relations. Simitis believed that Greece should allow Turkey to develop its relations with the EU within a framework of EU rules for Turkey's behaviour towards Greece. According to the former Prime Minister, if Greece could establish such rules at the EU level, the EU would assume responsibility for ensuring Turkey's compliance. The argument emphasises the causal significance of domestic sources of foreign policy and leadership style in particular. "Communitisation" was an internal, pre-conceived task, to the completion of which Simitis remained unequivocally committed throughout the period under investigation even in the face of severe constraints and evidence that challenged the necessity of the task. The argument was tested against three alternative explanations that incorporated all the explanatory variables discussed in the literature, including shifts in Greece's relative power position, the increasing economic costs of Greek policy, an external shock that demonstrated policy failure and the establishment of relevant EU foreign policy practices. Empirical testing of the four alternative explanations was based on process-tracing their observable implications for three dimensions of the policy making process: the definition of the policy problem the Helsinki strategy was intended to address, the alternative courses of action Greek foreign policy makers considered and finally the manner in which they were assessed. The theoretical framework constructed to resolve this empirical puzzle can be fruitfully applied to the study of several EU member-states' foreign policies, thus advancing the theoretically informed empirical study of foreign policy.

Item Type: Thesis (PhD)
Uncontrolled Keywords: Political Science, International Relations, European Studies
Sets: Collections > ProQuest Etheses
URI: http://etheses.lse.ac.uk/id/eprint/2754

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