Security

Events in the Middle East force realism on Erdogan

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President Recep Tayyip Erdogan may have increasing difficulties with the West, but his position in the Middle East is not all that easy either. Semih Idiz  Al-Monitor His regional archenemy, Syrian President Bashar al-Assad, continues to make headway, while his nemesis in Egypt, President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi, remains in power. The Qatar crisis caught him unaware and unsettled him. Meanwhile, he is bracing for the reign of Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman in Saudi Arabia, who is an enemy of the Muslim ... Read More »

Russia’s S-400s Will Protect Turkey From A “Kurdish Air Force”

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Many people thought that this day would never come, but it’s official – Russian President Putin will sell his Turkish NATO counterpart S-400 missiles, and there’s nothing that the US or NATO can do about… Andrew KORYBKO OrientalReview This is a profound geo-military pivot for Turkey because it solidifies Russia’s role as the country’s high-level strategic partner for decades to come, considering that Russian experts will be relied on to provide maintenance, repairs, spare parts, and upgrades to these anti-aircraft… ... Read More »

What that missile deal really means for Turkey

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The Russian S-400 surface-to-air missile array has been described as the most sophisticated air defense system in the world. It can track up to 80 targets at the same time, aiming two missiles at each one. Yasar Yakis It can destroy aircraft, cruise missiles, medium range missiles, drones and other airborne surveillance systems. And now Turkey has bought it from Russia. Arab News “My colleagues have already signed a deal on S-400s. A deposit has also been paid as far ... Read More »

Restoring UN Leadership of Libya’s Peace Process

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Efforts to reunify Libya after six years of internal strife have drifted. Global and regional powers should seize the opportunity of a high-level UN meeting on Libya and a new UN special envoy to speak with one voice and act to build an effective and inclusive peace process. ICG On 20 September, the Secretary-General of the United Nations, António Guterres, will chair a high-level meeting on Libya on the side-lines of the General Assembly. After a long period of drift ... Read More »

China reacts to India-Japan cooperation in northeast, says no room for ‘third party’

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The India-Japan joint statement had referred to cooperation between the two sides to develop India’s northeastern states as a “concrete symbol of developing synergies” Sutirtho Patranobis Hindustan Times China on Friday warned third parties against meddling in its boundary dispute with India, specifically mentioning the Arunachal Pradesh sector in an apparent response to Indo-Japanese plans to invest in infrastructure projects in the northeastern… A joint statement issued on Thursday following talks between Prime Minister Narendra Modi and his Japanese counterpart ... Read More »

How China’s economy could turn radioactive

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Satellites show massive land slides at North Korea’s nuclear test site, which are raising concern about radiation leaks that could threaten China. William Pesek Asia Times In February, China’s embassy in Tokyo issued a unique safety warning to millions of mainland tourists flocking to Japan: mind the radiation. Chinese diplomats in February were responding to an admission by Tokyo Electric Power Co. that radiation levels at the Fukushima atomic facility northeast of Tokyo were higher than previously… Yet China may ... Read More »

Russia, Turkey Sign S-400 Deal despite Criticism and Suspicion

Russian President Vladimir Putin (R) and his Turkish counterpart Tayyip Erdogan attend a news conference following their talks in Sochi, Russia, May 3, 2017. REUTERS/Alexander Zemlianichenko/Pool

Moscow – Moscow and Ankara confirmed on Tuesday that they signed a deal in which Moscow would sell Ankara S-400 missiles. Taha Abed alWahed “Signatures have been made for the purchase of S-400s from Russia. ASHARQ AL-AWSAT A deposit has also been paid as far as I know,” President Recep Tayyip Erdogan said on Monday. He stated that he and Russian President Vladimir Putin “are determined on this issue.” This is the largest deal that Turkey signs with a country ... Read More »

Can Trump and the United Nations Just Get Along?

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What has Donald Trump done to the United Nations? In the run-up to his inauguration in January, the president threatened to wreak havoc on the organization. Richard Gowan  The Century Foundation Angered by a December 2016 Security Council resolution criticizing Israeli settlement-building in the Occupied Territories, on which the Obama administration abstained, the president-elect darkly warned on Twitter that, “as to the U.N., things will be different after… During his turbulent tenure so far, Trump has veered from threatening major ... Read More »

US-Turkey Tensions Escalate Over Russian Missile Deal

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Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan has dismissed U.S. concerns about his government’s recent decision to buy an S-400 missile defense system from Russia In a speech Wednesday to mayors from his ruling AK Party, Erdogan said of the U.S., “They went crazy because we made the S-400 agreement. Dorian Jones VoA What were we supposed to do? Wait for you? We are taking and will take all our measures on the security front,” he added. The multibillion-dollar missile purchase has ... Read More »

Cardin: Turkey’s Purchase of Russian missile system may trigger sanctions

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Top Senate Foreign Relations Democrat warns $2.5 billion Turkey-Russia deal might violate new sanctions law that Trump opposed. Andrew Hanna Politico Turkey’s recent purchase of an advanced Russian anti-air weapons system may have violated a U.S. law that would require an automatic imposition of sanctions on the NATO member, a top Democratic lawmaker said today. The letter, sent by Maryland Sen. Ben Cardin to Trump administration officials, warns that Ankara’s purchase of Moscow’s S-400 air defense system, which finalized on ... Read More »

8 Reasons Why America Supports the Syrian Kurds

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Common interests, objectives and strategies are what binds the Democratic Federation of Northern Syria and the United States and its allies Sherko Kirmanj The National Interest The United States and Turkey have enjoyed close ties for a good part of the past eight decades. The relationship with the United States has been Turkey’s most important exercise in foreign policy for its longstanding economic, military and intelligence support while Turkey’s geography has been a consistent source of convenience for the U.S. leaders, generals ... Read More »

Ukraine’s New Diplomatic Battlefronts: U.S. Weapons, UN Peacekeepers

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The front lines between the Ukrainian army and Moscow-backed forces in eastern Ukraine may be static but see frequent and violent firefights Diplomatic manoeuvering over new U.S. lethal weapons for Kyiv risks aggravating the conflict and Russia’s UN peacekeeping proposal could prove a distraction from a genuine solution. Magdalena Grono ICG Washington is considering providing Kyiv with lethal weapons, worrying many residents of eastern Ukraine – and not just separatist rebels or pro-Russian sympathisers. “Most people here don’t think about what ... Read More »

Greece warns ending EU talks with Turkey a mistake

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Halting accession talks with Turkey would be a strategic mistake by the European Union, Greek Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras said on Sept. 10, amid a war of words raging between Berlin and Ankara. Agence France-Presse Hurriyet  During a recent election debate, both Germany’s Chancellor Angela Merkel and her Social Democratic rival Martin Schulz endorsed ending Turkey’s EU accession talks. Ties between the two nations have become strained since last year’s failed coup attempt. Relations further deteriorated after the detention of several German citizens including Deniz Yücel, ... Read More »

Japan scrambles to growing incursions of China, Russia warplanes

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Russian and Chinese aircraft are probing Japanese air defenses at a rate not seen in more than a decade Peter J. Brown Asia Times Amid talk of Beijing and Moscow playing a role to defuse the confrontation with North Korea, actions by China and Russia’s air forces around Japan would seem to be adding pressure on Tokyo to boost military… Russian and Chinese military aircraft are probing Japanese air defenses at a rate not seen in over a decade, causing ... Read More »

Rohingya crisis: UN sees ‘ethnic cleansing’ in Myanmar

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The security operation targeting Rohingya Muslims in Myanmar “seems a textbook example of ethnic cleansing”, the UN human rights chief says. BBC Zeid Raad Al Hussein urged Myanmar to end the “cruel military operation” in Rakhine state. More than 300,000 Rohingya Muslims have fled to Bangladesh since violence erupted there late last month. The military says it is responding to attacks by Rohingya militants and denies it is targeting civilians. The violence began on 25 August when the Rohingya militants ... Read More »

Angela Merkel: Europe needs coherent foreign policy

German Chancellor Angela Merkel delivers her speech as she attends an electoral meeting in Delbrueck, western Germany, on September 10, 2017. / AFP PHOTO / dpa / Friso Gentsch / Germany OUT        (Photo credit should read FRISO GENTSCH/AFP/Getty Images)

German chancellor calls for a common EU stance on China and Russia as well as more solidarity on migration Esther King Politico The biggest challenge facing the European Union in the coming years will be to forge a coherent foreign policy, German Chancellor Angela Merkel said in an interview published Sunday. Merkel, who is poised to win a fourth term in Germany’s parliamentary election later this month, also expressed hope that a solution to the impasse over the distribution of migrants across the ... Read More »