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Christian Democracy and the AKP: Parallels and Contrasts

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Although the leaders of the Justice and Development Party (AKP) stress that their party is not based on religion, a comparison with the Christian democrat parties of Western Europe seems worthwhile, since the AKP clearly has Islamist origins, and espouses faith-based values. This essay summarizes the history of Christian democrat parties in France, Germany and Italy, concluding that they have tended to drift closer to classic conservatism. In comparing them with the AKP, it suggests that while there are some important similarities, significant differences also arise, thanks to the altered environment in which the AKP was established, and some relevant differences between the Muslim and Christian religions and their attitudes towards the state.
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Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: Department of Political and International Studies, School of Oriental and African Studies, University of London, UK

Publication date: June 1, 2005

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