Showing posts with label Turkey. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Turkey. Show all posts

Friday, September 01, 2023

Days before a meeting between Putin and Erdogan in Sochi, Russia starts delivering grain to 6 African countries without charge

    Friday, September 01, 2023   No comments

Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov announced the start of work to deliver grain to 6 African countries free of charge. This comes after a meeting with his Turkish counterpart Hakan Fidan in the capital, Moscow, on Thursday, to discuss President Vladimir Putin's initiative to export one million tons of grain to poor countries.

Lavrov added - in a speech at the Moscow Institute of International Relations today - that work on the supply of grain to 6 African countries has already begun, explaining that Burkina Faso, the Central African Republic, Eritrea, Mali, Somalia and Zimbabwe will receive 50,000 tons of grain for free in the coming months.

"You will also pay the relevant expenses," the Russian foreign minister added.

Putin announced on July 27 that his country would provide grain free of charge to 6 African countries within 3 or 4 months, after Moscow suspended work on the grain transportation agreement with Ukraine across the Black Sea.

Lavrov discussed with his Turkish counterpart - during talks that took place between them in Moscow yesterday - Putin's initiative to export one million tons of grain to Turkey for later transfer, with the participation of Qatar, to poor countries.

Moscow withdrew in July from this important agreement for global food supplies, and criticized in particular the obstruction of its grain exports due to Western sanctions.

"We reiterated our conviction that the resumption of the agreement will allow for the restoration of stability," Fidan said during a press conference with his Russian counterpart.

He added that the grain deal is of vital importance to global food security, considering that a package of proposals prepared in cooperation with the United Nations constitutes an appropriate basis for resuming the initiative.

For his part, Lavrov demanded guarantees from the West that his country would also be allowed to export grain and fertilizer without hindrance. Moscow will be ready to return the grain deal, which it withdrew from in mid-July.

It is noteworthy that dozens of commercial ships have been stuck in the ports of Ukraine on the Black Sea since the start of Russia's war on this country on February 24, 2022, and some ships carrying grain were allowed to cross, according to an agreement mediated by Ankara and the United Nations, but Moscow suspended it in mid-July.

The meeting between Ministers Lavrov and Fidan aims to prepare for a meeting between Putin and his Turkish counterpart Recep Tayyip Erdogan in Sochi the day after tomorrow, according to the Kremlin today.

Saudi Arabia informed us that the Jeddah meeting was held to convince everyone of the futility of negotiations without Moscow, and there will be no joint G20 declaration that does not express our position and the roadmap for normalizing Syrian-Turkish relations under study. ~ Lavrov 

Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov announced that Saudi Arabia had notified Russia that the Jeddah meeting was held to convince everyone of the futility of negotiations without Moscow.

Lavrov said in this regard: “Our Saudi friends told us that they want to host another meeting in this way in Jeddah,” adding that this is done only in order to convey an idea to the Western participants and Ukraine itself that any discussions are completely hopeless without the participation of Russia.

Lavrov added, during a speech he delivered to students and faculty at the Russian Diplomatic University, on the occasion of the start of the academic year: “Moscow has learned of the appeal made to the Secretary-General of the United Nations, Anthony Guterres, to send his representatives to online working group meetings on the “peace formula” that he put forward. Vladimir Zelensky".

In this context, Lavrov stressed that this is unacceptable, saying: “I saw Mr. Guterres in Johannesburg, on the sidelines of the BRICS summit, and I frankly told him that this violates all the principles of the secretariat’s work, because according to the Charter, it should be neutral and should not be To receive instructions from any government.”

Lavrov said that the draft roadmap for the normalization of Syrian-Turkish relations is under study, and that contacts are under way to reach a generally acceptable situation.

Lavrov added, in a speech he delivered at the Moscow Institute of International Relations on the occasion of the start of the academic year in Russia, “We handed over the draft road map on the normalization of Syrian-Turkish relations to all our colleagues in June of this year. It is now under study, and contacts are underway regarding it.

Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov met his Turkish counterpart Hakan Fidan yesterday in Moscow, where they held discussions on a number of issues, including the resumption of the grain deal, bilateral relations, the Syrian file and the Ukrainian crisis.

It is worth noting that, in December of last year, Russia hosted the first talks in 11 years between the defense ministers of Turkey and Syria, and last May it hosted a quartet meeting that included the foreign ministers of Syria, Turkey, Iran and Russia, in an effort to remove the differences between Damascus and Ankara.

On the other hand, he announced, today, Friday, that his country will not agree to adopt the declaration of the “G20” summit unless it reflects Russia’s position on global crises.

Lavrov pointed out that "the West raises the issue of Ukraine in every event of the G20, although the role of the G20 is initially supposed to make decisions regarding the stability of global financial and economic processes."

Lavrov said, speaking at the Moscow State University of International Relations, on the occasion of the start of the new academic year: “If you have decided to rewrite the powers of the “twenty”, and you want to deal with international crises, then we have presented our document that lists the conflicts that still exist and their roots are linked to the wars that they sparked. The West, if they really want to, let us discuss everything, but this would duplicate the work of the United Nations and undermine the original role of the G20.

Lavrov stressed, by saying: "In any case, there will be no joint declaration in the name of all members that does not express our position, there will be no such declaration."

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Monday, February 06, 2023

Turkey, Syria earthquake: initial death toll, cracks in Gaziantep Citadel, and oil and gas pumping stopped

    Monday, February 06, 2023   No comments

 Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan revealed today, Monday, that the death toll from the earthquake has risen to 912, and 5,383 people have been injured. Turkish Vice President Fuad Oktay also confirmed the collapse of more than "1,700 buildings as a result of the earthquake."

Oktay said in a statement to reporters that schools and university dormitories were not damaged, while schools were suspended in 10 states for a week due to the earthquake.

The Turkish representative added that 102 mobile broadcasting stations for mobile phones were sent and operated to the areas affected by the earthquake, adding that Hatay Airport was closed and civil aviation traffic was stopped in the states of Kahramanmaraş and Gaziantep, and Adana Airport was closed to flights until further notice.

Oktay indicated that the concerned authorities had "stopped the supply of natural gas to many areas" because of the earthquake, pointing out that "the aid will be coordinated under the supervision of the Turkish Emergency and Natural Disasters Administration and distributed to those affected by the earthquake."

Oktay stated that the earthquake affected large areas in Turkey and abroad, indicating that the specialized teams began search and rescue work from the first moments.

He stated that many Turkish ministers had moved to the areas affected by the earthquake to continue the search and rescue work.

Oktay called on citizens not to use their cars and roam the streets in order to keep the roads passable for the movement of cadres supervising rescue operations and ambulances.

Regarding the details of deaths and injuries as a preliminary outcome, Oktay said: "We have 70 deaths and 200 injuries in Kahramanmaraş, 4 deaths and 7 injuries in Hatay, and 20 deaths and 200 injuries in Osmaniye."

He continued: "13 deaths and 22 injuries in Adiyaman, 14 deaths and 226 injuries in Diyarbakir, 18 deaths and 200 injuries in Sanliurfa, 80 deaths and 600 injuries in Gaziantep, 10 deaths and 118 injuries in Adana, and 47 deaths and 550 injuries in Malatya."


Syria was affected by the devastating earthquake that shook several provinces in southern Turkey today, Monday, with a magnitude of 7.9 on the Richter scale.

Al-Mayadeen correspondent reported that the total number of earthquake victims rose to more than 592 people in various Syrian governorates, while Sarmada was classified as a disaster area.

According to the latest toll announced by the Syrian Ministry of Health, the death toll from the earthquake rose to 371 deaths and 1,089 injuries, most of them in Latakia, Aleppo, Hama and Tartous, stressing that this outcome is not final.

According to the Ministry, readiness has been raised in hospital ambulance departments in all governorates, and response teams that transfer injuries to hospitals have been mobilized, pointing out that the general emergency plan and the supply plan for supplies and medicines have been implemented to supply the affected places with them.

27 ambulances and 7 mobile clinics were sent from Damascus, Rif Dimashq, Quneitra, Homs and Tartous as support to Aleppo and Lattakia, while 4 truckloads of medicines and surgical and first aid supplies were sent to Aleppo, Lattakia and Hama.

According to the Director General of the National Center for Seismology, Raed Ahmed, the most affected areas are those near the epicenter of the earthquake in Idlib, Latakia, and Aleppo, stressing that the earthquake is the strongest during the investment lifetime of the national seismic network in Syria, that is, since 1995.

According to Ahmed, aftershocks have occurred and will occur successively, but they are much weaker than the strength of the earthquake that occurred, explaining that the state of seismic instability will continue, but with tremors that are weaker in impact and within the limits of 5 degrees.

The Director General of the National Center for Seismology confirmed that the buildings will be damaged and affected by the earthquakes, according to the response of their building structure and its resistance to earthquakes.

150 deaths in Aleppo and its countryside

Al-Mayadeen correspondent reported that there were more than 50 victims in Aleppo as a preliminary outcome of the devastating earthquake, explaining that the number of rescue teams in Aleppo is very few, and the capabilities are weak as a result of the war and the siege on Syria.

Al-Mayadeen correspondent indicated that more than 50 buildings were destroyed in Aleppo as a result of the earthquake.

The collapse of more than 60 buildings in Lattakia

Likewise, Al-Mayadeen correspondent in Lattakia reported that at least 80 people died, and 300 others were injured in a preliminary outcome as a result of the earthquake that struck the province, which led to the collapse of more than 60 buildings completely and partially, and cracks in hundreds of homes, with the continuation of the work of removing rubble in areas many in the province.

The earthquake, which measured 7.8 degrees on the "Richter" scale, caused the complete collapse of 21 buildings in the streets of Rumaila, Ghazalat and Rumaila in the city of Jableh, which led to the death of more than 30 people and about 200 injuries, as the mechanisms of civil defense, firefighting and the rest of the government sectors work to remove the rubble. Under difficult weather conditions, to get out the trapped under it.

A number of buildings collapsed on Damsarkho Highway, Al-Raml Al-Janoubi, and some floors in Al-Azhari and Al-Awaina roundabouts in Lattakia. Significant damage and cracks occurred in dozens of homes in the city, which led to the death of a number of its residents and the injury of others.

Likewise, the collapse of a number of houses over the heads of their occupants was recorded in the villages of Video, Bustan Al-Basha, Satamo and Al-Haffah, and a number of deaths and injuries were recorded, in addition to the removal of a number of survivors from under the rubble, while continuing the work of removing the rubble and evacuating some buildings from their residents after cracks occurred in them. by the earthquake.

The Lattakia governorate has urgently secured shelters for residents whose homes were damaged by the earthquake, and provided urgent relief and food assistance to those affected.

Tens of thousands of residents rushed to evacuate their homes after the earthquake occurred in Lattakia Governorate, as streets, squares, and public roads were crowded with people from Monday night until the morning hours, for fear of aftershocks that had followed after the severe earthquake, with all medical staff on alert to transport the dead and wounded to hospitals.

The collapse of an entire neighborhood in the Syrian countryside of Idlib as a result of the earthquake

Video footage captured by a drone showed the extent of the destruction in an area belonging to the Syrian governorate of Idlib, as a result of a strong earthquake that struck at dawn today, Monday, the regions of southern Turkey and northern Syria, leaving hundreds dead and injured, and was felt by a number of countries in the region.

A distress call from the Red Crescent

The Secretary-General of the Syrian Red Crescent, Khaled Ircsous, confirmed that there is a severe shortage of medicines and fuel needed to operate hospitals in light of the catastrophe of the earthquake that hit the country.

Ircouss indicated that the Red Crescent teams are still working to recover bodies from under the rubble, stressing that "we see injured people under the rubble, but we cannot reach them due to the lack of equipment."

Earthquake damage affects Syrian archaeological sites

The Directorate General of Antiquities and Museums stated that initial reports received from some governorates indicated that damage had occurred to some archaeological sites as a result of the earthquake at dawn on Monday.

And the Directorate stated, in a statement, that "Aleppo Citadel suffered minor and moderate damages, including the fall of parts of the Ottoman mill, and the occurrence of cracks and cracks and the fall of parts of the northeastern defensive walls, and large parts of the dome of the Ayyubid mosque minaret fell, and the entrances to the castle were damaged, and parts fell of stones, including the entrance to the Mamluk defensive tower, and the facade of the Ottoman hospice was damaged.

The statement stated that some of the museum artifacts inside the display storage were damaged, and cracks and cracks appeared on the facade of the National Museum in Aleppo.

According to the statement, the historic neighborhood of Aqaba, adjacent to the city's western wall, was damaged and collapsed, and it is not far from Bab Antioch. The same applies to the historic Al-Jalloum neighborhood, where severe damage occurred, including the fall of dip ceilings, walls, and parts of facades.

Arab and international solidarity with the victims of Syria

Russian President Vladimir Putin expressed to his Syrian counterpart, Bashar al-Assad, his country's readiness to provide the necessary assistance to overcome the effects of the earthquake that struck Syria at dawn today.

In his telegram, Putin offered his sincere condolences to the victims of the earthquake, wishing the injured a speedy recovery.

In turn, UAE President Mohammed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, during a phone call with President Assad, confirmed his country's stand with Syria and its solidarity with it as a result of the devastating earthquake, and offered sincere condolences for the hundreds of victims who fell, stressing that his country is fully prepared to help the Syrian people overcome the effects of this disaster.

Likewise, the Sultanate of Oman expressed, in an official statement, its solidarity with both Turkey and Syria, and extended its sincere condolences and sympathy to the families of the victims of the devastating earthquake that occurred in southern Turkey, and to the Turkish and Syrian peoples, and wished a speedy recovery for the injured.

Algeria extended its sincere condolences to the families of the victims and the governments and peoples of Turkey and Syria following the devastating earthquake that struck the two countries, and left heavy losses in lives, property and infrastructure, according to a statement by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and the national community abroad.

Caretaker Minister of Public Works and Transport, Ali Hamiyah, announced in a statement: "We made quick and successive contacts with the Syrian Ministers of Transport and Health, conveying to them our condolences on behalf of the Lebanese Prime Minister Najib Mikati and the Council of Ministers, and stressing that Lebanon is a state and people fully prepared to provide all possible assistance." And within the available capabilities, in everything that the Syrian state requires to face the repercussions of the earthquake that struck last night in the north of it, and other regions and countries as well.

Tuesday, August 09, 2022

Turkish media: Erdogan and Assad may hold talks at the suggestion of Putin; US Media: Turkey builds "Bayraktar" aircraft factory in Ukraine

    Tuesday, August 09, 2022   No comments

The Kremlin announced today, Tuesday, that Russian President Vladimir Putin and his Turkish counterpart, Recep Tayyip Erdogan, discussed the situation in Syria.

Turkish media revealed that President Erdogan and his Syrian counterpart, Bashar al-Assad, may hold a phone call, during the coming period, at the suggestion of Putin.

And the newspaper "Turkey" published a report, in which it was based on private sources, that Erdogan, who recently visited Sochi, Russia, exchanged views on Syria with President Putin, and the Russian President suggested that he meet Assad and Erdogan, in order to solve the problem of terrorism in Syria.

But Ankara made it clear that it is "too early" for a meeting between the two presidents, while a phone call is still possible.

The newspaper pointed out that there are diplomatic contacts from a Gulf country and an African one with Syria and Turkey, in order to arrange a meeting between Presidents Assad and Erdogan.

During their bilateral summit in Sochi, Putin and Erdogan confirmed their support for preserving the unity of Syria. 

During this meeting in Sochi, Putin was accompanied by the president of the Chechen Republic, R. Kadyrov, who might be called upon to nudge Turkey further in the direction of Russia.

Erdogan announced, earlier, that his country intends to launch a military operation inside Syrian territory to combat “terrorism” and establish what he described as a “safe zone,” noting that his country “will not ask permission before launching a military operation in Syria.”

While Ankara says that its military presence in Syria aims to prevent the threat from the Kurdish factions, Damascus considers the Turkish military presence in the country an occupation and a threat to regional and international peace.

In a letter sent by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs to both United Nations Secretary-General Antonio Guterres and the Security Council, Syria protested Turkey's intention to launch a military operation inside its territory.

Last May, an official source at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Expatriates confirmed that "Syria's sovereignty, independence, and territorial integrity will not be the object of blackmail or bargaining by the Turkish regime."

Reacting to the latest media report about possible talks between the Syrian President Bashar al-Assad and his Turkish counterpart, Recep Tayyip Erdogan, is Syrian sources, off the record, rejected the the idea of such event happening, characterizing it as "totally incorrect."


Meanwhile, US media sources highlight another aspect of Turkish involment in matters of concern to Russia.

The American "Newsweek" magazine said today, Tuesday, that the Turkish company "Baykar", which produces the "Bayraktar" unmanned combat aircraft, is currently building a factory on Ukrainian soil.

The magazine quoted Ukraine's ambassador to Turkey, Vasyl Bodnar, as saying that the Turkish company had already purchased a plot of land in Ukraine and developed the station project. Bodnar added that "Baykar" intends to build the plant in fulfillment of the personal commitment of the company's owners to make this production in Ukraine.

The magazine pointed out that the Bayraktar TB2 drones were considered one of the most valuable weapons for Ukraine in the first months of the war, especially before the arrival of the American "HIMARS" missiles.

She noted that Ukraine had more than 20 unmanned aircraft produced by the "Baykar" company when the war began, and acquired them during the past two years.

Because Kyiv currently has a limited supply of these planes, and given that Russia has learned a lesson from weakness during the first phase of the war, it is unlikely that Ukrainian forces would risk losing their TB2s from unmanned aerial vehicles, by pushing them forward in areas where Russian air defenses could easily fall."

She added that "a TP2 aircraft factory can fundamentally change the situation in Ukraine," noting that the time required for the construction of the factory is still unclear.


Editors' Note: This story was updated to include the Syrian government's rection to the news about the phone call between the two presidents.

Wednesday, July 27, 2022

Putin, Erdogan and Raisi meeting raises concerns for German Foreign Minister

    Wednesday, July 27, 2022   No comments

German Foreign Minister Annalina Birbock has criticized Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan for posing for a photo with Russian and Iranian President Vladimir Putin and Ebrahim Raisi.

"The fact that the Turkish president is in this picture is a challenge to NATO," the German Foreign Minister said, in an interview with the newspaper "Bild", adding that this is "simply, incomprehensible."

This week, the presidents of Russia, Turkey and Iran met in Tehran, where they held tripartite talks and took a joint photo at an extraordinary summit in light of the ongoing international conflict, with Syria being its most prominent focus. They also discussed joint relations, in addition to a number of files, including the Ukrainian grain export agreement.

Commenting on the German parliament's accusations about the "slowing down" of arms supplies to Kyiv, Bierbock said that the Federal Republic of Germany "has no aim to deceive its European neighbours."

"We can't deliver tanks with the tip of a finger," Birbock added.

The Ukrainian authorities appealed to Western countries to continue supplying them with weapons, while Kyiv accused Germany of being very slow in supplying them.



Tuesday, July 12, 2022

Putin visits Iran to participate in a summit with Erdogan and President

    Tuesday, July 12, 2022   No comments

Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov confirmed today, Tuesday, that Russian President Vladimir Putin will visit Tehran on July 19.

Peskov said that President Putin will hold talks with his Iranian counterpart, Ibrahim Raisi, and Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan, within the framework of the meeting of leaders of the guarantor states of the Astana Process on the Syrian settlement.

He continued, "The president's trip to Tehran is already being prepared. There will be a meeting of the heads of the guarantor states of the Astana process to promote the Syrian settlement. In addition to the tripartite meeting, of course there will also be bilateral meetings and separate talks with the Turkish president," adding: "Yesterday we announced high-level contacts. The level between Putin and Erdogan, and the meeting will take place there."

The Iranian Mehr news agency had earlier quoted the head of the Iranian Parliament's Economy Committee, Mohammad Pour Ibrahimi, that President Putin would visit Iran next week.

"Potential consultations between Putin and my president are likely to focus on developing economic cooperation between Iran and Russia," Ebrahimi said.

The announcement of the visit coincides with US National Security Adviser Jake Sullivan saying that his country has information that Tehran is preparing to provide Moscow with hundreds of drones, and train Russian soldiers to use them.

In a meeting with his Iranian counterpart, on June 29, on the sidelines of the sixth summit meeting of the countries bordering the Caspian Sea, Putin confirmed that both countries are in constant communication on security issues, and that they have many things to talk about.

Raisi said, at the time, that Russian-Iranian trade relations are developing, and nothing will stop this development, commenting: "The agreements we reached are under implementation, and this indicates that the will of our two countries aims to develop trade and economic relations."

Wednesday, June 22, 2022

Oil is thicker than blood: Erdogan and bin Salman agree to start a 'new era' of cooperation

    Wednesday, June 22, 2022   No comments

Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman and Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan discuss improving relations and investment between the two countries and activating the agreements signed between them in the fields of defense cooperation.

Turkey and Saudi Arabia affirmed during talks in Ankara today, Wednesday, their intention to start a new era of joint cooperation, at a time when the two countries aim to fully normalize their relations, which collapsed after the killing of Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi.

In a joint statement following talks between Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman and Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan, the two sides said they discussed improving relations and investing in the energy, defense and other sectors.

In the statement, they confirmed their agreement to "activate the agreements signed between them in the areas of defense cooperation in a way that serves the interests of the two countries and contributes to ensuring the security and stability of the region."

The two countries also expressed their desire to "work on developing projects in the energy field", "facilitating trade, searching for investment opportunities, and increasing communication to turn them into tangible partnerships."

The two parties announced, "the agreement to activate the work of the Saudi-Turkish Coordination Council, and to raise the level of cooperation in issues of common concern."

Today, Wednesday, Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman arrived in Turkey on his first official visit to this country, after 9 years of disputes exacerbated by the assassination of Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi in Istanbul.

The first chapter of reconciliation took place at the end of April, when Erdogan visited Saudi Arabia and discussed with the Crown Prince ways to "develop" relations between the two countries.

Three weeks before that, the Turkish judiciary decided to reserve the case for the assassination of opposition journalist Jamal Khashoggi, columnist for the Washington Post, who was killed in October 2018 in his country's consulate in Istanbul.

Tuesday, June 21, 2022

The challenges of building national, regional and global secirity systems

    Tuesday, June 21, 2022   No comments

Erdogan vows a decisive response and a Greek general threatens to bomb Istanbul .. The "Aegean" crisis raises the tension between Ankara and Athens to its most dangerous stage

Tensions are escalating between the two NATO allies, Turkey and Greece, after Ankara accused Athens of arming 12 islands in the Aegean Sea near Turkish territory, in addition to the chronic dispute over the file of natural gas exploration in the eastern Mediterranean.

The tension reached the point where the retired Greek general, Yiannis Egolfopoulos, threatened to bomb the vital bridges of Istanbul, which was met with Turkish criticism, most notably by the leader of the Nationalist Movement Party, Devlet Bahçeli, who said, “It seems that the Greeks forgot the fate of their ancestors who were buried at the bottom of a sea Aegean.”

The escalation reached its climax after the Greek Prime Minister, Kyriakos Mitsotakis, accused Turkey of destabilizing the island of Cyprus in front of members of the US Congress recently, and demanded Washington not to sell Ankara F-16 fighters.

Erdogan: decisive response

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan responded to him, during his participation in the "Efes 2022" military maneuvers, that his country is serious about responding decisively to Greece, and that the latter should realize its borders and abide by them.

As a result of these statements, the military clash became the talk of the street and the media on both sides.

Military option

In light of the escalation of statements, the retired Turkish general, Erdogan Karagosh, said that a war between Turkey and Greece was inevitable, calling for the need to strengthen the strength of the Turkish Air Force.

“We have to get new F-16 fighters by any means, and maintain the ones we have,” Qaragosh said, in an interview with one of the private Turkish channels, according to the Al-Jazeera report.

He added that Turkey has no problem with its land and naval forces, "but we must strengthen the strength of our air force, because in the event of any military conflict between the two countries, the air force will resolve the situation, and in the event that we do not obtain new fighters, the balance will tip in favor of Greece." .

In turn, the Turkish expert in military and security affairs, Mateh Yarar, ruled out the outbreak of any direct military clash between the two countries, indicating that Athens relies in its verbal escalation on the West's support for it, and that it will not be able to engage in a military confrontation against Turkey, given "the disparity in the balance of power between the two sides." ”

Yarar pointed out - in a statement to the Turkish newspaper Milliyet - that Ankara calls on Greece to abide by the Lausanne agreements in 1923 and Paris in 1947, which stipulate keeping the mentioned islands demilitarized, referring to Athens' pledge before the major powers at the time to abide by this condition.

sovereign right

On the other hand, the Greek political analyst, Taki Barbarakis, said in an interview with the Turkish "Khabar Turk" channel, that talk about the possibility of a military clash between Ankara and Athens has increased recently among Greek politicians and even among the general public.

He pointed out that there is great popular support for the Greek government regarding the issue of arming the Aegean islands, and that public opinion in Greece believes that arming the islands is a sovereign right of Athens stemming from the Charter of the United Nations.

According to the Greek analyst, Athens relies on arming the Aegean islands on Article 51 of the United Nations Charter, which provides for the “right of self-defense”; Her government has repeatedly announced that it has taken this step in order to counter any potential threat from Turkey. She pointed out that the "Aegean Sea" army, which Turkey formed outside the NATO command, has a landing fleet on the coasts near the islands.

Turkish opposition

In parallel with the debate between Ankara and Athens, the Turkish opposition entered the line, accusing the ruling Justice and Development Party governments of neglecting the issue of the Aegean islands, and went on to consider that President Erdogan and his governments did not take the necessary measures in time, and that Greece intensified its arming of the islands after the arrival of Justice and Development to power in the country in 2002.

In this context, the former deputy of the opposition Republican People's Party, Mustafa Balbay, says that Greece has begun to intensify arming the islands near the Turkish shores since 2004, and has also settled civilians on these islands.

"Where were the justice and development governments at that time?" Balpay asked. Why did Erdogan’s governments not take deterrent measures at that time?”

In his opinion, President Erdogan's recent statements regarding Greece's arming of the Aegean islands are nothing but "media propaganda, in preparation for the upcoming presidential elections" scheduled for June 2023.

real occupation

Balpay sees Greece's arming the Aegean islands as a real occupation, especially with Athens also housing civilians on these islands, and called on President Erdogan to focus on the issue of "occupation" during his talks with the leaders of the countries concerned with this issue.

The former deputy called for taking more necessary measures and preparing for all possibilities, including the military option, indicating that in the event of any armed conflict, Turkey will not only face Greece, but will also face major global powers, led by the United States of America, which recently began establishing bases Large military in the Greek islands near Turkey.

NATO and Other Security Structures

Finnish President Sauli Niinisto expressed hope on Tuesday that progress will be made in the ongoing talks with Turkey on Helsinki's accession to the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO).

Niinistö said during a press conference with the President of the European Parliament, Roberta Mitsola, that "Finland continues talks with Turkey about joining NATO, and we hope to make progress in those negotiations."

"I think it will be difficult to reach an agreement before the Madrid [NATO summit]," he added.

The Finnish president indicated that he does not believe that his country's accession procedures to NATO can be completed by next September.

And the Finnish presidency announced yesterday that "a new round of negotiations conducted by Finland and Sweden with Turkey will be held in Brussels," against the backdrop of Ankara's objection to the two countries' request to join NATO.

Turkish presidential spokesman Ibrahim Kalin confirmed yesterday that the progress of Sweden and Finland's accession to NATO is linked to the steps that these two countries will take, in line with the words of Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan a few days ago.

Last Wednesday, Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu announced that "Turkey will send a document to Sweden and Finland to form the basis for negotiating the two countries' accession to the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO)," adding during a press conference with the Foreign Ministers of Ireland and Norway in Ankara: "We must Reaching an understanding with Sweden and Finland on how to meet our demands."

Erdogan also stressed during the meeting of the parliamentary bloc of the "Justice and Development Party", Wednesday, that his country "will not change its position regarding the accession of Sweden and Finland to NATO until they take clear and tangible steps towards combating terrorism." "We will not forgive any countries that support terrorist organizations that threaten Turkey," he added.

And last May, talks were held in Turkey between Turkish officials and delegations from Sweden and Finland. Sources told "Reuters" that "the talks made little progress in addressing the motives behind Ankara's objection to the two countries joining NATO."

Turkey, the conflict of NATO and the Collective Security Organization

Turkey has tended to sell arms to Central Asian countries, to perpetuate the idea that it is able to guarantee the defense capacity of countries that revolve in its ideological, social, economic and military orbit.

The North Atlantic Treaty Organization cannot be seen as the only military bloc and force in the world. It is possible to rely on the assessment of the CSTO’s bloc as an almost parallel bloc, as it includes countries that enjoy an important military power, such as Russia, Belarus and Armenia, in addition to Tajikistan, Kyrgyzstan and Kazakhstan; Countries considered full members, some members as observers, and others as potential candidates, such as Iran.

At a meeting of the Parliamentary Assembly of the Collective Security Treaty Organization in the Armenian capital recently, the speaker of the Kyrgyz parliament indicated that the organization’s crisis response system and confronting escalating security challenges and threats constitutes an essential element of its activity, including the fight against international terrorism and extremism.

Also, he noted the need for Member States to deepen interaction to ensure a timely response, and stressed the need to focus the organization's efforts, not only on confronting challenges and security threats, but also on "eliminating the causes of their occurrence", and suggested the establishment of an entire military-political structure on the basis of a treaty organization. collective security.

The Russian Foreign Minister also noted that NATO countries are concerned about the growing importance of the Collective Security Treaty Organization, and stressed the need for it to play the role of "a guarantor of balance in the Euro-Atlantic region" and the indivisibility of security.

On May 16, a meeting of the heads of state of the Collective Security Treaty Organization was held in Moscow, during which the Russian president indicated that “NATO expansion is artificial, and goes beyond its geographical objective,” in an attempt to influence other regions, and noted that the CSTO “plays a role extremely important in stabilizing the former Soviet Union,” which encourages other countries to “consider joining the CSTO, which has sufficient capabilities to respond to the challenges of NATO expansion.”

However, the "Western European flock" continues its attempts to counter the influence of the organization, by preoccupying its members with their security, as well as by turning Turkey, as the spearhead of NATO, into a lever for anti-Russian influence, through escalation in Nagorno-Karabakh. At the request of Brussels and Washington, Ankara tried to play an active role in resolving this conflict, by exploiting Moscow’s lukewarm intervention in its results, and tried to offer a trade-off for the military alliance of the countries of the region with it, in exchange for accepting its membership in the Collective Security Treaty Organization.

With the aim of enhancing its importance in the region, Turkey pumped its investments, sent preachers, opened centers for educational programs in the Central Asian region, and circulated the terms and concepts of "Uzbek Turks", "Tatar Turks" and "Kyrgyz Turks" in its media, and began talking about the "Turkish world" And it established the “Turkish Council”, in parallel with the intensification of its activity in spreading the ideas of Turkish nationalism, as it seeks to create a new and alternative ethnic national identity for the post-Soviet republics, and to replace the region’s original society with a new fake one under Turkish leadership.

Turkey has also tended to sell arms to Central Asian countries, to perpetuate the idea that it is able to guarantee the defense capacity of countries that revolve in its ideological, social, economic and military orbit. Thus, it is trying to open the way towards Erdogan's project known as the "Great Turan" to restore the lands of the Ottoman Empire, by focusing on Kyrgyzstan and Tajikistan, to create a unified army for the Turan project, with the aim of extricating these countries and withdrawing them from the Collective Security Organization, and weakening the Eurasian Union militarily and economically.

As in the past, in order to create a permanent and constant threat to Russia, Britain created the Ottoman Empire. Today, both London and Washington are using Turkey as a member of NATO to confront Russia, especially in the Central Asian region, by proposing Erdogan the idea of ​​"the Great Turan", which is supposed to be able to bring about a radical change in the international balance of power.

For these purposes, the Westerners bear the filth of dealing with the Turkish president and his government, and suffer to see an “Asian NATO” under the Turkish leadership. The hostility of the Russian state makes them unable to determine the interests of their peoples, and unable to guarantee the Turkish-Erdogan fulfillment of their plans, amid the Turks’ dissatisfaction with their presence in NATO. In light of the mutual distrust between the two parties.

In the midst of this atmosphere, we are hearing some of Ankara’s Atlantic allies talking about the need to exclude it from the alliance, and they are closely following its positive contacts with Russia, which contributes to pushing Turkey to abandon its historical anti-Russian role, with the Turkish President’s assertion and his recent statements about Turkey’s unwillingness To participate in the anti-Russian sanctions policy imposed by Washington.

Tuesday, April 05, 2022

Paper: Turkish government exploring plans to "initiate a dialogue with the Syrian government"

    Tuesday, April 05, 2022   No comments

Erdogan and Assad, archive picture
 The Turkish newspaper, Hurriyet, reported on Monday that the Turkish authorities are currently in discussions to initiate a dialogue with the Syrian government, which would restore relations between the two countries to normal.

The newspaper quoted informed sources as saying that "the policy of balance recently adopted by Turkey, and the role that Ankara has played in recent months, especially toward resolving the war in Ukraine"... makes the current timing good for resolving Turkey's crisis in Syria.

The sources pointed out that Turkey, "in all its contacts with the Syrian administration," emphasizes 3 indispensable things, namely "preserving the unitary structure and the unity of the Syrian territories, and ensuring the security of refugees returning to their country," in addition to "the activity of the Kurdistan Workers' Party."

According to the newspaper, Ankara conveyed these important messages to Damascus, especially before the visit of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad to the UAE.

This development is one in many initiated by Erdogan's government to stablaize the economy before the elections. Turkish economy suffered due the the Syrian war, which Erdogan assumed would end fast. That did not. Now the Turkish economy is under stress due the war in Ukraine.

A Reuters poll showed, Monday, that "the annual inflation rate in Turkey is expected to rise to 61.5% in April, and only decrease to 52.2% by the end of the year, due to the country's impact on the crisis in Ukraine and the rise in commodity prices."

The average estimate of 17 institutions for annual inflation in April was 61.5%, with expectations ranging between 58.25% and 62.7%, and the decline of the lira and the rise in food and energy prices pushed inflation in February to its highest level in 20 years, recording 54.4% This is despite tax cuts on basic goods and government support for some electricity bills to ease the burden on household budgets.

Turkey's consumer price index has risen since last fall, with the lira weakening after the central bank in September began the 500 basis point cut cycle that Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan had long sought.

Economists pointed to "expectations of global consumer price inflation, in the wake of the Russian military operation, with energy prices reaching their highest levels in several years after the West imposed sanctions on Moscow," explaining that "Turkey imports almost all of its energy needs."

Tuesday, October 22, 2019

Full text of the Sochi Memorandum on Northern Syria signed by Putin and Erdogan

    Tuesday, October 22, 2019   No comments
The full text of the memorandum of understanding reached by the two countries, Russia and Turkey, related to Northern Syria. This version of the memorandum was provided to the media by the Turkish foreign ministry.
 "President of the Republic of Turkey, Recep Tayyip Erdogan and President of the Russian Federation, Vladimir Putin agreed on the following points:

1. The two sides reiterate their commitment to the preservation of the political unity and territorial integrity of Syria and the protection of national security of Turkey.

2. They emphasise their determination to combat terrorism in all forms and manifestations and to disrupt separatist agendas in the Syrian territory.

3. In this framework, the established status quo in the current Operation Peace Spring area covering Tel Abyad and [Ras al-Ain] with a depth of 32km (20 miles) will be preserved.

4. Both sides reaffirm the importance of the Adana Agreement. The Russian Federation will facilitate the implementation of the Adana Agreement in the current circumstances.

5. Starting 12.00 noon of October 23, 2019, Russian military police and Syrian border guards will enter the Syrian side of the Turkish-Syrian border, outside the area of Operation Peace Spring, to facilitate the removal of YPG elements and their weapons to the depth of 30km (19 miles) from the Turkish-Syrian border, which should be finalized in 150 hours. At that moment, joint Russian-Turkish patrols will start in the west and the east of the area of Operation Peace Spring with a depth of 10km (six miles), except Qamishli city.

6. All YPG elements and their weapons will be removed from Manbij and Tal Rifat.

7. Both sides will take necessary measures to prevent infiltrations of terrorist elements.

8. Joint efforts will be launched to facilitate the return of refugees in a safe and voluntary manner.

9. A joint monitoring and verification mechanism will be established to oversee and coordinate the implementation of this memorandum.

10. The two sides will continue to work to find a lasting political solution to the Syrian conflict within Astana Mechanism and will support the activity of the Constitutional Committee."

Tuesday, August 01, 2017

US Special Presidential Envoy Brett McGurk links Ankara to terror groups in Syria, Turkey angrily denies it

    Tuesday, August 01, 2017   No comments
Brett McGurk claimed the city of Idlib had turned into a "safe zone for al-Qaeda terrorists on the Turkish border".

Presidential spokesman Ibrahim Kalin on Monday criticized statements by the U.S. anti-Daesh coalition envoy that linked Turkey to terror groups operating in northwestern Syria.

Speaking Friday at a panel on U.S. President Donald Trump's fight against terrorism at the Middle East Institute in Washington, Special Presidential Envoy for the Global Coalition to Counter Daesh Brett McGurk claimed the city of Idlib had turned into a "safe zone for al-Qaeda terrorists on the Turkish border".

Kalin took exception to those remarks. "The terroristic structure in Idlib cannot be associated with Turkey," he said, speaking to Turkey’s TV Net. "Why? Because we do not control Idlib. There are Americans there, YPG there, [around Idlib]. There are Russians and regime forces," said Kalin... source

Saturday, June 17, 2017

Erdoğan wants Turkish military bases in Qatar and Saudi Arabia, condemns “Iranian expansionism” in the Middle East

    Saturday, June 17, 2017   No comments
Turkey does not condone “Iranian expansionism” in the Middle East although it does recognize its role and its cooperation in resolving problems in Iraq and Syria, President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan has said.

“Is Syria a theater for Iran’s sectarian expansionism? Yes, it is. Is Iraq a theater also? Yes, it is. I regard this a Persian expansionism rather than a sectarian one. I should specifically say that I do not approve of this Persian expansionism,” Erdoğan said in an interview with Portugal’s RTP channel, according to Anadolu Agency on June 16.

Turkey has long criticized Iran for pursuing a sectarian-based policy in the Middle East although it continues to work with Tehran on a number of regional issues.

However, Erdoğan made clear that Turkey and Iran, along with Russia, are working together in Syria through the Astana process. He also underlined that the problems in Iraq could not be resolved without Iran and that excluding Iran from efforts to deal with the Syrian civil war would not serve anybody’s interest as the Syrian regime works with Iran.

Erdoğan repeated his calls to the United States and Saudi Arabia to join the Astana process, which recently produced a mechanism to monitor the ongoing cease-fire in Syria.

President slams US over military base

On the ongoing Raqqa operation that aims to eliminate the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL), Erdoğan reiterated Ankara’s long-standing criticisms against the United States, which chose the People’s Protection Units (YPG) as a partner even though Turkey regards the group as a terrorist organization.

“I understand that they do not regard it as a terror organization as they prefer to walk hand in hand in them and as they cooperate with them on Raqqa,” the president said, recalling that Turkey would take any action against the YPG in the event that its security is threatened.

A new military air strip is being built by the U.S. near Kobane in northern Syria which is currently under YPG control, Erdoğan said.

“Planes will land there in the future. [The YPG] will be settled there. Why are you doing all of this? Why you are entering these places?”

A plot against Qatar

Touching on the ongoing crisis in the Gulf, Erdoğan described the unfolding situation as a plot against Qatar and said he did not approve of what has happened to the country.

“I sense that there is a very serious plot against Qatar and it’s not true. Qatar is a country with an overwhelmingly Muslim population. Those who implement all of this against Qatar are also Muslim,” he said, adding that the problem should have been addressed with dialogue from the beginning.

“It’s my wish that Saudi Arabia will show its leadership and that this issue will be resolved before the Ramadan Feast.”

Military base in Saudi Arabia

Turkey’s military base in Qatar will serve the entire region’s stability and security, Erdoğan said, noting that his government had suggested to Saudi Arabia that it establish a base on Saudi soil as well, but Riyadh has yet to respond to Turkey’s call.

Turkey will augment the number of troops at the military base in Qatar, Erdoğan said.


Sunday, June 11, 2017

Saudi Media publish photos of Erdogan with Hikmatyar from 1985; Is Turkey going to be punished for standing with Qatar?

    Sunday, June 11, 2017   No comments
Saudi media released pictures, from 1985, showing now Turkish president, Erdogan, sitting before Afghani leading figure of the U.S.-sponsored rebels who fought against the USSR supported government in Afghanistan, Gulbiddin Hikmatyar. Alarabiya-English accompanied the image with a comment, suggesting that the image shows the link between Islamists and wars.

The photos and reports by Saudi media came just days after Turkish lawmakers and the president authorized the deployment of troops to Qatar. Source

Meanwhile, Saudi Arabia continued its campaign against Qatar. Alarabiya continued to broadcast reports about Qatari rulers and their connections to terrorist organizations.

 A sample of such reports is shown below:



Wednesday, June 07, 2017

Turkish parliament approves bill to deploy troops in Qatar

    Wednesday, June 07, 2017   No comments
Turkey's parliament on June 7 approved a draft bill allowing its troops to be deployed to a Turkish military base in Qatar.

The move appears to support the Gulf Arab country as it faces diplomatic and trade isolation from some of the biggest Middle Eastern powers.

Saudi Arabia, Egypt, the United Arab Emirates (UAE) and Bahrain severed relations with Qatar and closed their airspace to commercial flights on Monday, charging it with financing militant groups.

Qatar vehemently denies the accusations. It is the worst split between powerful Arab states in decades.

President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan has criticized the Arab states' move, saying isolating Qatar and imposing sanctions will not resolve any problems and adding that Ankara will do everything in its power to help end the crisis.

Wednesday, May 10, 2017

Turkish leaders feel betrayed by the Trump administration's choosing Kurdish fighters as partners in its fight against ISIS over Turkey

    Wednesday, May 10, 2017   No comments
ISR comment: Turkish officials outraged by the US decision to arm Syrian Kurdish fighters. Erdogan, who will be meeting Trump soon, may return set to make a strategic move in terms of his regional and international alliances. A major shift is signaled by the unprecedented reaction to the White House's decision: Turkey's president, prime minister, and foreign minister, all, released harsh statements asking the US administration to rescind its decision, which is very unlikely to happen.

Turkey warns U.S. of blowback from decision to arm Kurdish fighters in Syria

Turkey warned the United States on Wednesday that a decision to arm Kurdish forces fighting Islamic State in Syria could end up hurting Washington, and accused its NATO ally of siding with terrorists.

The rebuke came a week before President Tayyip Erdogan is due in Washington for his first meeting with U.S. President Donald Trump, who approved the arms supply to support a campaign to retake the Syrian city of Raqqa from Islamic State.

Turkey views the YPG as the Syrian extension of the outlawed Kurdistan Workers Party (PKK), which has fought an insurgency in southeast Turkey since 1984 and is considered a terrorist group by the United States, Turkey and Europe.

"We want to believe that our allies will prefer to side with us, not with a terrorist organization," Erdogan told a news conference in Ankara, saying he would convey Turkey's stance to Trump next week and at a NATO summit later this month.

He said he hoped that recently taken decisions would be changed by the time he visits the United States.

Earlier, Prime Minister Binali Yildirim told reporters the U.S. failure to consider Turkey's sensitivities "will surely have consequences and will yield a negative result for the U.S. as well".

The United States regards the YPG as a valuable partner in the fight against Islamic State militants in northern Syria. Washington says that arming the Kurdish forces is necessary to recapturing Raqqa, Islamic State's de facto capital in Syria and a hub for planning attacks against the West.

That argument holds little sway with Ankara, which worries that advances by the YPG in northern Syria could inflame the PKK insurgency on Turkish soil.



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