Broken lines of Il/Legality and the reproduction of state sovereignty: the impact of visa policies on immigrants to Turkey from Bulgaria
Kaşlı, Zeynep Ülker and Parla, Ayşe (2009) Broken lines of Il/Legality and the reproduction of state sovereignty: the impact of visa policies on immigrants to Turkey from Bulgaria. Alternatives: Global, Local, Political, 34 (2). pp. 203-227. ISSN 0304-3754
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After the granting of citizenship to the 300,000 Turkish migrants from Bulgaria in 1989, the Turkish state has proceeded to enact a series of visa regime changes concerning more recent migrants from Bulgaria, who, according to the most recent modification, are only allowed to stay for ninety days within any six month period. This paper argues that the arbitrariness sustained by Turkish immigration policies partakes, on the one hand, in more global trends to increase the vulnerability of the dispensable workforce required by neoliberal market economies and, on the other hand, the arbitrariness enhances the political power of the state within and outside of its borders. The temporary legalization of Bulgarian Turkish migrants in return for voting in the Bulgarian elections reveals that the state consolidates its transnational political power by drawing and redrawing the broken lines of legality/ illegality. Moreover we demonstrate not only the ways in which the migrant population from Bulgaria is managed but also the strategies deployed by the migrants themselves in the face of such sovereign acts.
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