Political structure and crucial treaties
The Ottoman Empire was one of the world’s greatest states at the beginning of the 19th century when considering the size of its population size and territory. The Egyptian problem, the Balkan problem, the Straits problem and the great wars with Russia, these were the major troubles faced by the Ottoman Empire during this century, which saw the empire quickly begin to lose its territories. The political movements that emerged in the Balkan societies under Ottoman rule were largely an effect of the Russian and French Revolutions, both of which created and stimulated ideas of equality, liberty, justice and nationalism. The Edirne Treaty (1829) was signed at the end of the war with the Russian Empire; Greece gained its independence from the Ottoman Empire at this time; and Serbia also gained autonomy with this same Treaty. The Egyptian problem, which began as an internal affair, became a European problem when Governor Mehmet Ali Paşa (Muhammad ‘Ali Pasha) marched against Syria and Anatolia following rejection of his request that Syria should be governed by the Ottoman Palace. The Kütahya Treaty was signed in 1833: it involved negotiations among the European states following the Ottoman Empire’s request for help from Russia in order to put a stop to Mehmet Ali Paşa’s expansionist ambitions for Egypt. Egypt finally became an autonomous state according to the London Treaty signed in 1840, the result of negotiations between European states and the Ottoman Empire, which saw the final solution for the Egyptian problem. Between 1877 and 1878, the Ottoman and Russian war ended with the Berlin Treaty: the Bulgarian Principality was founded; Serbia became an independent state; and Bosnia-Herzegovina became one of the most privileged provinces of the Ottoman Empire according to the Treaty.
Reforms and modernisation
Dramatic losses experienced by the Ottoman Empire during the 19th century caused the rise of reform and modernisation movements, which aimed to stop the disintegration process, stabilise the economy, increase military power and restore national and international security. The Tanzimat Edict, which was issued during the reign of Abdülmecid on 3 November 1839, and the Islahat (Reformation) Edict, issued on 18 February 1856 after the Paris Treaty of 1856, following the Crimean War with Russia, represent some of the achievements of these movements. Thus, the non-Muslim population of the Ottoman Empire gained equal rights with the Muslim population, and the equality of all citizens before the law was declared.

The Young Turks, consisting of army officers and well-educated individuals, began loudly to defend ideas of freedom, justice and liberty as a cure for the disintegration process experienced by the Ottoman Empire. Namık Kemal, Ziya Paşa and Mithat Paşa, all of whom were the leading figures of these ideas, forced Sultan Abdülhamid II’s hand and, in 1876, a constitutional monarchy was declared. The First Constitutional Law of the Ottoman Empire was prepared and an assembly was formed that allowed the participation of the people in the administration.
Turkish War of Independence and the new Turkish state
The Turkish War of Independence was a political and military struggle aimed at protecting the unity of the country according to Misak-ı Milli (the National Oath), declared after occupation of the country by the allied forces following World War I. The Turkish War of Independence (1919–22), which in the physical sense ended with the Mudanya Ceasefire signed on 11 October 1922, officially ended with the Lausanne Peace Treaty signed on 24 July 1923. The new independent Turkish Republic was declared on 29 October 1923, following the political and military accomplishments of M. Kemal Atatürk and the Turkish people.