Turkey’s First Chinese Ambassador, Emin Ali Sipahi’s Chinese Impressions and Turkey-China Relations
Aksaray Üniversitesi, İktisadi İdari Bilimler Fakültesi, Uluslararası İlişkiler Bölümü, Aksaray/TÜRKİYE
Keywords: Turkey, China, Emin Âli Sipahi, East Turkestan, Diplomacy.
Although it has a very long history, Turkish-Chinese relations developed indirectly only in the 19th century in the modern period. While the experiences of both nations became a struggle for existence in the transforming world, the first official diplomatic relations started in the 20th century during the time of the Republic of Turkey. The problems experienced by China with the USSR and later Japan have been closely followed in terms of Turkish foreign policy between the two world wars. In this direction, while Turkey’s first diplomatic mission opened in China was to become a chargeship, shortly after, it was closed for economic reasons (1931) and opened as an embassy in 1939 on the basis of reciprocity. With the opening of the first Turkish Embassy in China, Emin Âli Sipahi became the first Chinese ambassador of Turkey as an envoy extraordinary.
In this direction, the study examines the developments Turkey experienced in its early years in China in line with the reports of Emin Âli Sipahi, Turkey’s “first Turkish ambassador” in China, and evaluates Turkey-China relations in this period. The reports written by Sipahi presented important data on China, Chinese culture, Turks and Muslims in China in the early period of the Republic of Turkey. Emin Ali Sipahi’s Chinese impressions were analyzed through political-cultural contacts and the Turkish image in China within the scope of Turkey-China relations. The study was evaluated in line with the archival documents and other sources obtained by the documentary source literature review.