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Engin Soysal

Senior Fellow - International Relations

Senior Fellow

He spent his childhood and adolescence in Paris, Brussels, and Beirut. Having completed his high school education at the Istanbul Lycée Français Saint Joseph, he studied at the University of Marmara, Faculty of Economic and Administrative Sciences and graduated from the Department of International Relations.

He holds two master’s degrees from the College of Europe (Promotion Altieri Spinelli) and Ecole Nationale d’Administration ENA (Cycle International Long, PromotionSaint-Exupéry).

He joined the Turkish Ministry of Foreign Affairs in March 1983. At the Ministry, he served respectively at the General Directorate for Bilateral Cultural Affairs, Department of EU Affairs and Office of the Undersecretary. Additionally, he worked as the Chief of Cabinet (1997-99) and Special Advisor to Foreign Minister Ismail CEM (2001-02) and Deputy Undersecretary for the Middle East, South Asia, and Policy Planning (2009-10).

He served abroad respectively at the Turkish Embassy in Tehran, the Permanent Delegation of the Republic of Türkiye to the European Communities, the Turkish Embassy in Paris, and the Permanent Delegation of the Republic of Türkiye to the UN.

Having served at the Turkish Embassy in Washington, D.C. as Counsellor and Minister-Counsellor, Deputy Chief of Mission between 2003-2007, he was appointed to Islamabad as Ambassador in 2007 and his posting there continued until mid-2009.

He contributed to the organization of trilateral summits between Türkiye, Pakistan, and Afghanistan. He represented Türkiye at meetings of the Group of Special Representatives for Afghanistan and Pakistan. 

Ambassador SOYSAL was appointed as Special Envoy of the U.N. Secretary General for Assistance to Pakistan on 27 September 2010. Assisting the Government of Pakistan in response to the extraordinary situation created by the 2010 monsoon floods was among his main tasks. He also acted as the Special Advisor for the Group of Friends of Democratic Pakistan.

He was appointed as the Permanent Representative of the Republic of Türkiye to the Council of Europe in October 2011.

On July 1, 2014, Ambassador Soysal returned to Ankara and was appointed as the Undersecretary of the Ministry for EU Affairs.

From 2016 to 2021 Ambassador Soysal served as Permanent Representative of Türkiye to the OSCE. He chaired the meetings of the Forum for Security Co-operation during the Turkish FSC Chairmanship at the first trimester of 2020. He became member of the OSCE Reflection Group. He contributed to the activities of the OSCE Group of Friends of Mediation, established under the Co-Chairmanship of Türkiye, Finland, and Switzerland in 2014.

Ambassador Soysal served as a member of the Foreign Policy Consultative Council before his retirement in August 2023. He was part of the Task Force of the Antalya Diplomatic Forum. In 2022, he was appointed coordinator by the Minister for the preparation and implementation of the various activities (publications; conferences, seminars, podcasts, documentaries) as part 100th anniversary of the foundation of the Republic of Türkiye and 500th anniversary of establishment of the Turkish Foreign service.

He gave a series of seminars under the theme "Diplomacy, Negotiation, Mediation" at the Institute of European Studies of the Marmara University, in 2022. Throughout his career, he participated as a speaker or panelist in various conferences and seminars in Turkey and abroad, particularly on the European Project.

He retired from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in 2023.

Passionate about literature, he is the translator of works by Henri Michaux, texts by J. M. G. Le Clézio and has published for over forty years in Turkish literary journals.

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