France

Ankara sanctions loom ahead of EU summit – Arab News

Brussels is unlikely to step back from its threat to impose curbs following Turkey’s insistence on carrying out drilling in disputed zones During a visit earlier this week condemned as “provocative and illegal” by the Cypriot government, Erdogan called for a “two-state” solution in Cyprus ANKARA: Turkey is facing a renewed threat of EU sanctions over …

Ankara sanctions loom ahead of EU summit – Arab News Read More »

How key is Turkey? – New Europe

The customs union has been key to Turkey’s economic successes and the country’s modernization. The EU is Turkey’s largest import and export partner. However, the country has been facing a severe currency crisis, soaring inflation and interest rates in recent time. With the severe plummeting of the Turkish lira in its value, so has Erdogan’s approval rating. As Turkey seeks to further antagonize Europe, the EU can use its leverage and cancel the customs union.

Turkey remains a key player in the Middle East, but it is not key to Europe’s economic growth. The EU can no longer tolerate Turkey’s blackmail, terror facilitation and insulting rhetoric. Therefore, the EU should support the French and Greek calls to suspend the EU’s customs union with Turkey and show it means business – or rather – no business until Turkey changes its belligerent tone and aggressive behavior.

Merkel: A decision will be made at EU summit about Turkey’s Eastern Mediterranean activities – Bianet

European Union (EU) leaders will discuss the future of the bloc’s relations with Turkey at their summit next month, Germany’s Chancellor Angela Merkel said yesterday (November 19). Speaking at a press conference following a video conference of EU leaders, Merkel said the meeting was largely focused on the coronavirus pandemic and disagreements over the EU …

Merkel: A decision will be made at EU summit about Turkey’s Eastern Mediterranean activities – Bianet Read More »

Turkey’s behaviour “widening its separation” from EU, Borrell says – Reuters

BRUSSELS (Reuters) – Turkey’s rhetoric on Cyprus is aggravating tensions with the European Union and Ankara must understand that its behaviour is “widening its separation” from the 27-nation bloc, EU foreign policy chief Josep Borrell said on Thursday. “We consider the recent actions and statements by Turkey related to Cyprus contrary to the United Nations …

Turkey’s behaviour “widening its separation” from EU, Borrell says – Reuters Read More »

This photo shows Macron and Erdogan at the UN General Assembly in 2018 — other photos from the event show them shaking hands – Fact Check

A photo has been shared repeatedly in multiple posts on Facebook and Twitter in November 2020 that claim it shows Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan refusing to shake hands with French President Emmanuel Macron. The posts circulated online as tensions between the two countries soared in a row over the freedom to mock religion. The claim is misleading; the photo …

This photo shows Macron and Erdogan at the UN General Assembly in 2018 — other photos from the event show them shaking hands – Fact Check Read More »

EU-Turkey relations at historical low point – European Parliament report – Ahval

“No incentive that the EU could offer can ever replace the much-needed political will to build a mature democracy,” it said, adding that the situation in Turkey had “far from improving, deteriorated even further.” The EP “firmly” insisted on the formal suspension of negotiations as suggested in last year’s report, so both sides could assess whether the current framework was functioning, or “explore possible new models for future relations”.

The EP “regrets the current lack of understanding between the EU and Turkey,” the report said, “but reaffirms its firm conviction that Turkey is a strategic neighbour and ally with which the EU wishes to have the best possible relations”.

Screws tighten on Gray Wolves, Erdogan’s European guard – Al Monitor

Indeed, there is no organization officially registered as the Gray Wolves, which has led many to play down the French ban as posturing. This, however, does not preclude judicial action against the Gray Wolves, based on symbols and signs. Darmanin conceded that the Gray Wolves were not a formal association but insisted they formed groups that meet regularly, are connected to each other and act as an organized body.

In Turkey, the Gray Wolves are organized as the youth branches of the far-right Nationalist Movement Party (MHP), called the Idealist Hearths. The MHP has been a staunch political ally of Erdogan’s Justice and Development Party (AKP) in recent years. Mehmet Ali Agca, who shot and wounded Pope John Paul II in 1981, is perhaps the most notorious of the Gray Wolves internationally. The movement has various avatars in Europe, such as the umbrella group called the Federation of Democratic Idealist Turkish Associations in France. Its members are active mostly in Lyon, Dijon, Strasbourg and Grenoble. 

Strong French Navy Presence in the Eastern Mediterranean – Naval News

The French Navy has dispatched three surface vessels to form a Surface Action Group (SAG) in the Eastern Med. French État-major des armées picture. Since November 6, the French Navy has dispatched three surface vessels to form the Surface Action Group (SAG) in the Eastern Med: First in class stealth frigate La Fayette Georges Leygues-class …

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Turkey’s Next Crisis – Institut Montaigne

Turkey has been at the forefront of the international stage these last few weeks, due to its tensions with Greece in the Eastern Mediterranean, its implication in the conflict between Azerbaijan and Armenia in Nagorno-Karabakh, and most recently, due to President Erdogan’s personal attacks on President Macron, after the latter pledged to step up his …

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Austria’s Leader Seeks Crackdown on Islamist Terrorism After Attack – New York Times

Chancellor Sebastian Kurz announced a set of legislative proposals that would make it easier to keep terrorists behind bars, close mosques and clamp down on funding for terrorists. BERLIN — Austria would allow courts to extend the sentences of convicted terrorists and it would establish a new criminal offense for people who “create the breeding …

Austria’s Leader Seeks Crackdown on Islamist Terrorism After Attack – New York Times Read More »

Attack on French Consulate Ceremony in Saudi Arabia Wounds at Least 2 – New York Times

PARIS — An explosion wounded at least two people in an attack on a non-Muslim cemetery in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia, on Wednesday during a ceremony organized by the French Consulate for Remembrance Day, French officials said. Nathalie Goulet, a French senator and a member of a parliamentary friendship group between France and Gulf countries, said …

Attack on French Consulate Ceremony in Saudi Arabia Wounds at Least 2 – New York Times Read More »

Macron’s War on Islamists Comes Up Against Erdogan’s Soft Power – Bloomberg

(Bloomberg) — On an industrial estate in the French city of Strasbourg a few miles from the European Parliament, a grand plan to build the continent’s largest mosque is slowly taking shape. The Turkish organization behind the 30 million-euro ($36 million) project says the Eyyub Sultan complex, replete with a dozen domes and minarets and surrounded by conference halls, …

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