Turkey

EU leaders must take ‘leap of faith’ to believe Turkey’s U-turn – Marc Pierini – Ahval

Former European Union ambassador to Ankara Marc Pierini spoke with Ahval’s Yavuz Baydar about Turkey’s bid for EU accession and the watershed moment for the country’s relations with its Western allies. Pierini addressed a number of issues in Turkey hindering the country’s decades-long EU bid and alienating Ankara from its Western allies. Turkey’s Court of …

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Open letter to EU’s Borrell: bitter joke or sheer disgrace? – Ahval

Dear Mr. Borrell, On Thursday, you received your dear friend Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlüt Çavuşoğlu with open arms in Brussels. You were the master of ceremonies. Normally for Turkey, a so-called “candidate country”, Çavuşoğlu’s host should have been Oliver Varhelyi, Commissioner for Neighborhood and Enlargement. But those days are long gone. Turkey was dropped from …

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Spanish Diplomacy in the Eastern Mediterranean – Inside Arabia

Amid a period in which geopolitical tensions are heating up in the Eastern Mediterranean, Spain is stepping up its diplomatic efforts to lower the temperatures. As tensions between Greece and Turkey were heating up last summer, Spanish Minister of Foreign Affairs Arancha González Laya visited both countries’ capitals on July 27 and 28 and called …

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Turkey’s Eastern Mediterranean Strategy Is Not About Natural Gas – Foreign Policy

Turkey’s adventures abroad are about more than hydrocarbons. They’re a bold and expensive attempt at geopolitical revisionism. In an episode that has tediously repeated itself several times since July, Turkey’s seismic-survey ships and navy vessels clash with Greek authorities while probing for hydrocarbons in waters off the small Greek island of Kastellorizo. Turkey and Greece—perennial …

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Turkey sovereign wealth fund turns into debt fund – report – Ahval

Turkey’s sovereign wealth fund has turned into the country’s biggest source of financing after the central bank’s foreign currency reserves turned negative, the trade deficit widened and revenue for the tourism industry slumped, Sözcü newspaper reported. The fund’s balance sheet took a big hit in 2019 and those financial problems intensified last year as it …

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Turkey not the same as in 2000 or 2016, Dendias says | ekathimerini.com

Ahead of the imminent exploratory contacts with Ankara, Foreign Minister Nikos Dendias said in an interview with Kathimerini that Athens will have a constructive disposition, but stressed he is worried that Turkey is neither the country of the early 2000s that harbored European ambitions nor that which engaged in these talks in 2016. “Of course, no one …

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A list of everyone President Erdoğan thinks are terrorists – Ahval

In Turkey it’s not very difficult to be labelled a terrorist by President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan or other members of the AKP government. You can be given this honour by signing petitions, protesting, being Kurdish, being a journalist, or even being an abstract financial force like inflation. Students are the latest group that President Erdoğan …

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Germany says: Turkish think tank SETA disseminating pro-AKP propaganda in Europe – Turkish Minute

[…] According to DW, the German government also stated that a SETA report titled “International Media Outlets’ Operations in Turkey” that was published in July 2019 served to pressure the Turkish government’s opponents.[…]

[…] The SETA report, which analyzed foreign news outlets’ coverage of the July 2016 coup attempt and the AKP’s subsequent crackdown, drew strong criticism from journalists, press unions, foreign media outlets and critics, who accused the pro-government think tank of profiling journalists through methods used by the Turkish police for gathering intelligence.

The German government also revealed in November 2019, in response to a parliamentary inquiry questioning the financial sources of SETA, that the foundation was funded mainly by the family of Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan’s son-in-law and former Finance and Treasury Minister Berat Albayrak. […]

Why Trump Shielded Turkey’s Halkbank And Tried to Help Iran Evade Sanctions – Foreign Policy

The U.S. president never could grasp that shielding Turkey’s Halkbank for Erdogan would make Iranian sanctions evasion easier. On March 1, a U.S. District Court in New York will start the trial of what is alleged to be the largest-ever sanctions evasions scheme, a $20 billion plan prosecutors say was carried out by Turkey’s state-owned …

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Turkey’s press freedom expanded during AKP rule – Fahrettin Altun – Ahval

Freedom of press and expression in Turkey have expanded  “incomparably’’ from two decades ago, when the ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP) came into power, President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan’s communications director said on Saturday. Turkish media maintains diversity and an environment of freedom, with “certain circles’’ within and outside of the country exploiting this situation, …

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U.S. government begins legal proceedings against Turkish hacker group – Ahval

The U.S. government is taking Turkish hacker group Ayyıldız Team to court in the United States, according to IndyTurk. The U.S. government lodged a request with the United States District Court for the Southern District of New York requiring social media companies Facebook, Instagram, Twitter and Google to reveal details of the group’s social media …

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Facing a changing main opposition, Erdoğan doubles down on polarization – Middle East Institute

Last week, on a TV show, a veteran CHP MP and former culture minister, Fikri Sağlar, explained he felt uncomfortable seeing female judges wearing headscarves in courts. He stated that, “When I stand before a judge wearing a türban, I doubt that she will defend justice. Some of them act militantly and ideologically, and a struggle must be waged against this.” The CHP quickly responded after the comments, saying Sağlar’s views did not represent the party’s official stance on the headscarf issue. CHP Chairman Kemal Kılıçdaroğlu also reiterated that the CHP is not interested in how women dress in their daily lives, at work, or in the courts.