Tansu Ciller

Tansu Ciller

Prime Minister of Turkey.
Date of Birth: 24.05.1946
Country: Turkey

  1. Biography of Tansu Çiller
  2. Early Life and Education
  3. Political Career
  4. Accomplishments
  5. Later Life

Biography of Tansu Çiller

Early Life and Education

Tansu Çiller, an economist and politician, was born in Bilecik, Turkey. She is the daughter of a provincial governor, with roots tracing back to the Adjar Muslims who migrated from Georgia to Turkey. She completed her education at the School of Economics at Robert College for Girls in Istanbul. Later, she earned a doctoral degree from the University of Connecticut and completed post-doctoral research at Yale University. Çiller began her teaching career at Bogazici University in Istanbul in 1978 and became a professor there in 1983. Additionally, she served as the president of the now-defunct Istanbul Bank.

Political Career

After holding various academic positions at several universities, Çiller actively entered politics in November 1990 when she joined the conservative True Path Party. She was elected as a member of the Turkish Parliament in 1991, representing Istanbul, and served as the Minister of State for the Economy in the coalition government led by Suleyman Demirel. On June 13, 1993, she became the leader of the party and subsequently became the Prime Minister of Turkey. In 1995, after the Republican People's Party withdrew from the coalition, Çiller attempted to form a minority government but did not secure parliamentary support. She later agreed to form a new cabinet with the participation of the Republican People's Party. From 1996 to 1997, she also held the positions of Minister of Foreign Affairs and Deputy Prime Minister. However, her tenure was cut short by a military coup following the Susurluk scandal.


During her time in office, Çiller signed a customs agreement between Turkey and the European Union. One of her major achievements was transforming the Turkish military from an organization with outdated weapons from World War II into modern armed forces capable of successfully combating the Kurdish Workers' Party. She managed to persuade the United States to list the Kurdish Workers' Party as a terrorist organization, and later achieved the same decision from the European Union. Çiller faced a parliamentary investigation over serious corruption allegations during her time as Prime Minister. However, she and another former Prime Minister, Mesut Yılmaz, were later cleared of charges primarily due to procedural issues and their immunity. The cases against them were closed by a parliamentary commission in late 1998.

Later Life

After her defeat in the November 2002 elections, Çiller retired from politics. She is married to Özer Çiller and has two children.