Foreign Policy of the European Union towards the Arab Uprisings

Gümüş A.

İstanbul Gelişim Üniversitesi Sosyal Bilimler Dergisi, vol.9, no.2, pp.612-627, 2022 (Peer-Reviewed Journal)


The emergence of the Arab Uprisings started a regional transformation and led to changes of the policies of the regional and external actors. Although the EU had close economic and political relations with the regional actors, the EU, like many other actors, was caught unprepared against the regional upheaval. The EU’s wait-and-see policy and cautious steps towards different cases of the Arab Uprisings increased criticisms against the EU as a normative power and global actor. Due to lack of cooperation for determining and implementing a common foreign policy especially in case of surprising events and the diverging interests of the EU member states, the EU could not play a leading role during the Arab Uprisings. Therefore, the low performance of the EU meant a missed opportunity in its neighborhood. Additionally, the EU had to encounter new problems stemming from the Uprisings such as influx of refugees and increase in terrorist actions. This article will qualitatively analyze the foreign policy of the EU towards the different cases of the Arab Uprisings by using the research method of process tracing.