Hakan Fidan slated to be next head of Turkish intelligence


Dr. Hakan Fidan, a deputy undersecretary for international security issues and foreign affairs at the Prime Ministry, has been approved as heir apparent to current National Intelligence Organization (MIT) head Emre Taner. Fidan got the approval of President Abdullah Gul to be the MIT's new deputy-under undersecretary and so is set to succeed Taner, the current undersecretary, who has been at the post for almost five years. Fidan, 42, was born in Ankara, and served in the Turkish Armed Forces (TSK) as a non-commissioned officer for 15 years, from 1986 to 2001. During that time, he also worked at NATO's Germany-based Allied Rapid Reaction Corps (ARRC). After leaving the army, he worked as a political and economic consultant at the Australian Embassy in Ankara. He earned a bachelor's degree in management and political science from the University of Maryland College (UMOC) and a master's and doctorate from Bilkent University in Ankara. He has also studied at the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) in Vienna, the United Nations Institute for Disarmament Research (UNIDIR) in Geneva, and London's Verification Technologies Research Center. He has also taught at Hacettepe and Bilkent Universities. Fidan was later appointed head of the Turkish Development and Cooperation Agency (TIKA), where his contributions to the implementation of Turkish foreign policy drew widespread praise. During his term at the agency, Turkey has become a donor state at the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD). He made little-publicized visits to various regions with current Foreign Minister Ahmet Davutoglu, who was then Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan's top foreign policy advisor. He accompanied Erdogan on his visits abroad and meetings with foreign leaders.