Don't miss

Replay


LATEST SHOWS

ENCORE!

The Best of the 2018 Cannes Film Festival

Read more

ENCORE!

Cannes 2018: and the Palme d’or goes to....

Read more

ENCORE!

Cannes 2018: Lebanese film 'Capharnaum' wows critics

Read more

EYE ON AFRICA

Ebola outbreak in DR Congo: vaccinations to start on Sunday

Read more

MEDIAWATCH

The Royal wedding: Pomp & controversy

Read more

ENCORE!

Cannes 2018: John Travolta brings the mob to the red carpet

Read more

THE WORLD THIS WEEK

Summit or No Summit: North Korea angry over military drill

Read more

DOWN TO EARTH

Could thawing permafrost unleash long-gone deadly viruses?

Read more

FRANCE IN FOCUS

French and noble in 2018: What remains of France's aristocracy?

Read more

REPORTERS

An in-depth report by our senior reporters and team of correspondents from around the world. Every Saturday at 9.10 pm Paris time. Or you can catch it online from Friday.

Latest update : 2013-10-18

Is Turkey’s secular model broken?

© France 24

With the government lifting the ban on the Islamic veil in public administrative buildings, restricting the sale of alcohol and taking control of the army, the Turkish secular opposition is worried. Are the Islamists trying to change a society founded on the separation of prayer and power? We investigate a country torn between Islam and secularism.

Under the leadership of the AKP – the party for Justice and Development – Turkey has grown into a regional powerhouse. When the Islamist and conservative party came to power 11 years ago, the country was just recovering from a serious financial crisis. Since then, it has enjoyed renewed growth and begun the negotiation process to join the EU.

But talks with the EU are now bogged down, and the Islamist policies of Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan are raising concern, in a state born from the nationalist and secular vision of Mustafa Kemal Atatürk.

On September 30, the prime minister unveiled a series of reforms, including the right of some civil servants to wear the Islamic headscarf, in a clear tip of the hat to the country’s most conservative fringe. Veiled university students have welcomed the reform.

Another landmark was a law voted last spring to restrict the sale of alcohol. Prime Minister Erdogan said the law would create a “pious generation” rather than one of “drug addicts”. The secular opposition reacted strongly, denouncing a “creeping Islamisation” of Turkey. The same anger at the government’s policies, perceived as authoritarian and Islamist, was expressed in the mass social protests of last June.

But the government cracked down hard on the protesters, sending a clear warning ahead of next March’s elections.

By James ANDRE , Fatma KIZILBOGA

COMMENT(S)

Archives

2018-05-18 Middle East

Beyond the conflict: Reporter's notebook in modern-day Israel

Israel regularly makes headlines, but there is more to the country than the conflict with the Palestinians. FRANCE 24 reports from a young but highly developed nation, a holy...

Read more

2018-05-11 Middle East

Video: Stateless in Palestine

What does life in the West Bank look like under Israeli occupation? Our reporters travelled to Area C, to meet the women and men who live on lands coveted by Israeli settlers....

Read more

2018-04-27 France

Video: The Foreign Legion, another French exception

Shrouded in mystery and prestige, the French Foreign Legion is just as feared by its enemies as it is envied by its allies. The legionnaires come from across the world, prepared...

Read more

2018-04-20 Africa

Africa’s donkeys slaughtered for Chinese ‘miracle elixir’

Every year, China slaughters millions of donkeys to make Ejiao, a traditional medicine hailed as a ‘miracle elixir’ which is used to treat various ailments. As China’s donkey...

Read more

2018-04-13 Americas

From Brazil to Canada: the new odyssey for African migrants

Canada has become the new El Dorado for many African migrants, who have seen Europe and the United States close their borders. But they face a dangerous journey across South and...

Read more