Middle East

Greece vs. Turkey: Are We Headed for an Intra-NATO War?

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The alarming escalation in the Aegean. The Aegean Sea between Greece and Turkey hosts one of the world’s highest concentrations of high-tech weaponry. John Psaropoulos The Weekly Standard Athens Sixty-seven surface ships and two dozen submarines are deployed on a body of water the size of Lake Superior. The two air forces command 448 fighter jets armed with smart bombs and guided missiles. On land, 832 heavy tanks and more than 2,500 lighter artillery vehicles—as much tank firepower as in ... Read More »

Putin, Erdogan discuss preparations for Russia-Turkey-Iran summit in Ankara

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Preparations for an upcoming summit meeting of the Russian, Turkish and Iranian leaders in Ankara were in focus of a telephone conversation between Russian and Turkish Presidents, Vladimir Putin and Recep Tayyip Erdogan, the… AMN “The two presidents discussed preparations for a regular meeting of the top-level Cooperation Council between Russia and Turkey and the second summit of the Astana process guarantor nations – Russia, Turkey and Iran – due to be held in early April in Ankara,” the… The ... Read More »

Spy Attack Widens Turkey’s Split With NATO Allies Over Russia

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As U.S. and European allies form a diplomatic front against Russia, Turkey’s coziness with the Kremlin is testing its crucial defense ties with the U.S. and its military alliance with NATO. Selcan Hacaoglu Bloomberg The U.S., Canada and several European nations expelled more than 100 Russian diplomats on Monday to punish President Vladimir Putin’s government for the nerve-agent attack on a former Russian spy in the U.K. Turkey, which has grown closer to Russia in recent years, stayed out of ... Read More »

Europe fakes Turkish delight

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Prospect of breathing new life into Turkey’s bid for EU membership remains as remote as ever. Matthew Karnitschnig Politico Bulgaria’s Black Sea coast offers everything Europe’s political elite expect from a good summit: an exotic location, breathtaking views and (most important) casks of fine wine. If only Recep Tayyip Erdoğan hadn’t shown up. For the EU’s top brass, the irascible Turkish leader was the proverbial fly in the summit soup at Monday’s dinner meeting with Council President Donald Tusk, Commission ... Read More »

ISIS Returnees Bring Both Hope and Fear to Chechnya

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The return of ISIS fighters to Chechnya could pose a security challenge for the war-torn Russian republic. The authorities may respond true to form, with repression, but efforts to repatriate women and children stranded in Syria and, in some cases, to reintegrate foreign fighters should not be discounted. Anna Arutunyan ICG The victories over ISIS in Mosul and Raqqa pose a dilemma for states whose citizens travelled to join the Islamic State’s (ISIS) ranks and who may now seek to return ... Read More »

Palestinian refugees lament as Trump funding cuts create job insecurity and a pension crisis

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The livelihoods and long-term futures of thousands of Palestinian refugee families across Lebanon, Jordan, Syria, Gaza and the West Bank are at risk due to Donald Trump’s catastrophic decision to cut the American donation to the UN Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees (UNRWA). Elena Fiddian-Qasmiyeh The Conversation The US president’s decision to contribute only US$60m to UNRWA in 2018 – instead of US$125m – has been widely denounced as a brutal form of collective punishment for the Palestinian ... Read More »

3 years of Yemen bloodbath marked by US & UK arms deals with Saudis

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Saudi Arabia’s military intervention in Yemen turns three, with no end to the bloodshed in sight. RT Riyadh’s ‘modernizer crown prince’ just got plenty of new weapons from US and Britain for the occasion. It’s quite ironic that one of the biggest humanitarian disasters of our time stems from the events that were hailed in the West as a sign of great progress in the Arab world. The people have had enough, they are throwing down dictators and demanding political ... Read More »

Sweden’s Örebro City Council: “End the invasion of Afrin”

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Örebro city mayor and municipal commissioners condemned the Turkish state bombings and invasion and stated that they stand in solidarity with the people of Afrin and YPG/YPJ forces. ANF Örebro City Council administrators from various political parties came together to condemn Turkey’s bombings and invasion in Afrin, standing next to each other with signs that read “AFRIN”, and read a… Mayor of Örebro Kenneth Nilsson from the Social Democratic Workers’ Party and municipal commissioners Murad Artin from the Left Party, ... Read More »

Turkey still in talks to buy US Patriot missiles

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Turkish foreign undersecretary also set to visit Washington, perhaps next week, as part of bilateral working groups. Al Jazeera Turkey has said that it is continuing talks with the US over buying Patriot missile systems, while trying to iron out a number of issues between the two NATO allies. “I can say that our discussions with the US regarding Patriot missile system are continuing,” Foreign Ministry spokesman Hami Aksoy told a news conference in the capital Ankara, while discussing NATO-integrated defence ... Read More »

Saudi Arabia opens airspace to Israel for first time ever for Air India flight bound for Tel Aviv

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‘You know, they said the Saudis wouldn’t let any flight pass. So here, the Saudis are permitting it. It is a process, I think’ Alexander Cornwell and Ari Rabinovitch The Independent Saudi Arabia opened its airspace for the first time to a commercial flight to Israel with the inauguration of an Air India route between New Delhi and Tel Aviv. Flight 139 landed at Tel Aviv’s Ben Gurion Airport after a seven-and-a-half hour journey, marking a diplomatic shift for Riyadh that Israel says was fuelled by shared concern over Iranian influence in ... Read More »

Yazidi Massacre in Afrin: Children Killed, Villages Bombed, Temples Destroyed

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Yazidis, a historically persecuted non-Muslim people in the Middle East, are yet again fleeing for their lives — this time from Turkey-backed jihadists invading Afrin in northern Syria. Uzay Tulut The Christian Post Murad Ismael, executive director of Yazda, a relief organization for Yazidi victims of genocide, has alerted the world to the deadly threat posed by Turkish airstrikes many times on his social media accounts and… “We are evaluating what to do when the [whole] city falls, including an option to ask ... Read More »

US hostility means Iran must boost China, Russia ties: official

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Growing hostility from US President Donald Trump means Iran must strengthen its ties with Russia and China, a top official said on Saturday. Al-Monitor AFP “The use of radical elements hostile to the Islamic Republic shows that the Americans are trying to increase the pressure against Iran,” said Alaeddin Boroujerdi, chairman of the Iranian parliament’s foreign affairs committee. His comments, carried by the semi-official ISNA news agency, were the first reaction by a senior Iranian official to Trump’s appointment of ... Read More »

Interview Best teacher in the world Andria Zafirakou: ‘Build trust with your kids – then everything else can happen’

Andria Zafirakou 1a Sarah Lee for the Guardian LLLL global teacher

After the London art teacher won her $1m prize, she was showered with praise by Theresa May and the education secretary – but she is exactly the kind of teacher this government actively discourages Decca Aitkenhead The Guardian Andria Zafirakou has been functioning on three hours’ sleep a night for weeks, but looks radiant. “It’s adrenaline, it’s excitement, it’s everything.” Nominated by current and former colleagues for the Varkey Foundation’s annual Global Teacher prize, dubbed the Nobel for teaching, last month ... Read More »

Turkey’s Siege Mentality

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Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan is shaping a narrative of a country under siege, a ​victim of Western powers both in history​ and in today’s Syrian war​. While this rhetoric is popular, a broader platform is needed to bridge sharp divisions in society and mend relations with longstanding Euro-Atlantic allies. Nigar Göksel ICG The streets of the Dardanelles port of Çanakkale were packed with people in a jubilant mood. Beyond the centuries-old forts guarding the strait, Turkish warships rode at ... Read More »

Turkey’s Erdogan warns Europeans ‘will not walk safely on the streets’ if diplomatic row continues

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It comes after German Chancellor Angela Merkel warned war of rhetoric must stop Samuel Osborne The Independent Europeans across the world will not be able to walk the streets safely if they keep up their current attitude towards Turkey, President Recep Tayyip Erdogan has warned. Turkey has been mired in a diplomatic row with Germany and the Netherlands after they banned Turkish officials from campaigning in support of an April referendum on boosting the… “If Europe continues this way, no European in any part of the… Turkey’s ... Read More »

TEV-DEM: Method of resistance changed in Afrin, we will prevail

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TEV-DEM pointed out that the resistance continues with different methods in Afrin and stated that victory will be achieved. ANF TEV-DEM also stressed that the Turkish state is aiming to change the demographic makeup with their genocidal attacks. Movement for a Democratic Society TEV-DEM issued a written statement today regarding the Afrin invasion and the resistance. The statement is as follows: “The Resistance of the Age has displayed 58 days of uninterrupted sacrifice against the… TEV-DEM: Method of… Read More »