Poll: Turkey's neighbors see it as safe haven in case of Turmoil
People in neighboring countries see Turkey's drive toward democratization as an opportunity and boost for their own countries, making it a regional leader rather than a threat, according to a major new survey conducted by Istanbul's Fatih University. The poll also found the majority of people in neighboring countries see Turkey as the best save haven to flee to in case of civil war. Some 67 percent of Iranians would choose Turkey as a safe haven in case of civil war, as would 34 percent in Iraq and 21 percent in Syria. A total of 27 percent of all respondents named Turkey as the most powerful country in the region, followed by Iran and Russia, with 13 percent each. With the exception of Armenia, 63 percent of people surveyed said they see Turkey as a model for reform in authoritarian Middle Eastern regimes. People in Iran (76 percent), Iraq (70 percent) and Syria (59 percent) – countries that have significant shortcomings in democratization – also cited Turkey as a model for their countries.