The Turkish-US visa spat was triggered by Kurdish dispute, Ankara’s flight from NATO to the Russian-Iranian fold

 

As of Monday, Oct. 9, US missions in Turkey have suspended non-immigrant visa services and closed their doors to the public, while Turkish consulates in the United States have suspended “all visa services” to Americans. The Turkish currency immediately plummeted on world markets. The ostensible cause of the visa spat was the arrest in Turkey of a local US consulate employee on suspicion of links to Fethullah Gulen, the Turkish cleric living in exile in America, whom President Tayyip Erdogan accuses of orchestrating the failed coup against him in 2016. Washington says the charge is baseless and damaging bilateral relations. Continue reading

Turkey Opens Its Largest Overseas Military Base in Somalia

Turkish Chief of Staff General Hulusi Akar, second left, and Somali Prime Minister Hassan Ali Khayre, second right, receive a salute from a Somali soldier at combined Turkey-Somali training center during his visit to Mogadishu, Somalia, Sept. 30, 2017. Farah Abdi Warsame/AP

 

The military base in Somalia is also a reminder that despite Turkey’s growing regional and national problems, Africa remains central to its global expansion strategy.

Turkey has opened its largest overseas military base in Somalia, cementing its relationship with the war-torn nation and strengthening its strategic place in the African continent.

The $50 million base was opened on Saturday (Sept. 30) and will train more than 10,000 soldiers. The move is part of an effort to institutionalize and restructure the police and military services, battle the terrorist group al-Shabaab, and help expand the government’s authority into more towns and regions. The new base also takes on an urgent significance as the 2020 withdrawal deadline for the 22,000 African Union multinational force gets closer.

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NATO Splinters: Germany Completes Withdrawal From Turkey’s Incirlik Airbase

 

Several months after an unprecedented collapse in relations between two NATO member states, on Thursday Germany’s military announced it has finished its withdrawal from Turkey’s strategic airbase Incirlik, which as a reminder was prompted by Ankara’s refusal to allow visits by German parliamentarians. Going forward, Bundeswehr planes will instead be based in Jordan. Continue reading

Turkey is trying to get an ATOMIC BOMB in secret weapons plan, warns expert

An expert has warned Turkey is the next country looking to expand its arsenal [Getty]

 

TURKEY’S President Recep Tayyip Erdogan is attempting to get hold of an atomic bomb in a plot to build up the nation’s weapons, an expert has claimed.

With tensions threatening to reach breaking point between the US and North Korea it has emerged Turkey could be trying to build up its weaponry as relations with the EU reach a new low. 

In a worrying claim, an expert has warned Turkey is the next country looking to expand its arsenal to include atomic bombs. Continue reading

President Erdogan says ‘era of a submissive Turkey’ is over

Turkey’s President and the leader of ruling Justice and Development Party Recep Tayyip Erdogan addresses his supporters at the parliament in Ankara, Turkey on July 25, 2017.

 

Turkish President Tayyip Erdogan prepares for a meeting with top European Union officials in the midst of an intensifying diplomatic row with Germany.

JULY 25, 2017 Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan ramped up his anti-Western rhetoric Tuesday ahead of a meeting between his foreign minister and top European Union officials, saying the era of a submissive Turkey bowing to every Western demand is over.

Turkey has been mired in an escalating diplomatic row with European Union powerhouse Germany following the arrests last week of a group of human rights activists, including a German national, on terror-related charges. Earlier, a German-Turkish journalist was arrested for allegedly spying and aiding Kurdish rebels. Continue reading

Germany Warns Its Citizens: They Risk Arrest If Traveling To Turkey

 

Escalation of the diplomatic row between Berlin and Ankara ended in a clear message. Foreign Minister Sigmar Gabriel warned German citizens that they risk arrest if they travel to Turkey.

Foreign Minister Sigmar Gabriel said Germany had revised its travel advice in the wake of the recent arrests of several human rights activists, including German national Peter Steudtner. Continue reading

Germany Blocks Defense Exports To Turkey In “Worst Crisis Since World War II”

The “worst crisis between Germany and Turkey since World War II” just took another turn worse, after German media reported that in the latest escalation to date between Berlin and Ankara, Chancellor Angela Merkel will freeze present and future Turkish orders of defense goods amid souring diplomatic relations between the two nations, Bild Zeitung said citing unidentified govt officials.

This effective trade embargo comes just hours after Germany’s issued a safety warning to tourists traveling to Turkey and warned investors against doing business there. As discussed this morning, in unusually bold language Germany’s foreign minister Sigmar Gabriel announced a “re-orientation” of German policy towards Turkey, saying Berlin would reconsider the economic aid and export credit guarantees it provides for the country. Continue reading

Turkey “Turns Away” From NATO, Buys Russian Advanced Missile System For $2.5 Billion

 

In a move that Bloomberg has defined as “signalling a turn away from the NATO military alliance that has anchored Turkey to the West for more than six decades” Turkey agreed to pay $2.5 billion to acquire Russia’s most advanced missile defense system, a senior Turkish official told Bloomberg on Thursday. The proposed deal which was first reported here back in November 2016, has been finalized and the preliminary agreement sees Turkey receiving two S-400 missile batteries from Russia within the next year, then producing another two inside Turkey. Continue reading

Iran official urges pressure on Turkey over dams

The centerpiece of Turkey's GAP is the Atatürk Dam which is one of the largest in the world.

The centerpiece of Turkey’s GAP is the Atatürk Dam which is one of the largest in the world.

 

An Iranian official has urged active diplomacy with Turkey towards tackling the problem of dust storms, which chronically blight regional states as a result of Ankara’s massive dam building projects.

As part of its Southeastern Anatolia Project known as GAP, Turkey has built 22 dams on the Tigris and Euphrates rivers, which also run across Syria, Iraq and Iran. Continue reading

Qatar Saudi Terror Row Deepens as Turkey Commits Troops

Turkish President Tayyip Erdogan poses with commandos following a fast-breaking iftar dinner at the 1. Commando Brigade in Kayseri, Turkey, June 8, 2017. Kayhan Ozer/Presidential Palace/Handout via REUTERS

 

On Friday the diplomatic split between Qatar and an Arab coalition led by Saudi Arabia deepened as 18 Qataris were placed on a terrorism blacklist and Turkey committed troops, warships and planes to defend their ally.

(DUBAI/DOHA) The developments intensified a confrontation between tiny-but-wealthy Qatar and a group of Arab nations led by Saudi Arabia and Egypt that accuse it of fomenting instability. The dispute has created a major diplomatic test for the United States, which is close allies of the countries on both sides.

In an apparent escalation of the crisis, staff at Al Jazeera, Qatar’s influential satellite television news channel which often infuriates the rulers of the Arab world, said on Thursday its computer systems were under cyber attack. Continue reading

NATO Splinters: Germany Says “Has No Choice But To Pull Out” Troops From Turkey’s Incirlik Airbase

 

Diplomatic relations between NATO members Germany and Turkey hit rock bottom on Monday when Germany’s foreign minister Sigmar Gabriel said his country has no choice but to begin the process of pulling its forces out of Turkey’s Incirlik air force base as the Turkish government will not allow all German lawmakers to visit troops there.

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The scandal erupted last Thursday, when Turkey’s foreign minister said it is not possible to allow German lawmakers to visit troops stationed at Turkey’s Incirlik air base now, although he said Ankara may reconsider if it sees “positive steps” from Berlin. It was not immediately clear just what Turkey’s “demands” or expectations, monetary or otherwise, were from Merkel for it to change its view. Ties between the NATO allies deteriorated sharply in the run-up to Turkey’s April 16 referendum that handed President Tayyip Erdogan stronger presidential powers.

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Turkey Refuses To Grant Germans Access To Incirlik Airbase

(ZeroHedge)

 

While Angela Merkel is busy sowing the seeds of the next cold war between Germany and the Trump administration (and therefore the US, if only for the next three and a half years), a troubling flashpoint for Germany continues to grow in Turkey where on Tursday, Turkey’s foreign minister said it is not possible to allow German lawmakers to visit troops stationed at Turkey’s Incirlik air base now, although he said Ankara may reconsider if it sees “positive steps” from Berlin. It was not immediately clear just what Turkey’s “demands” or expectations, monetary or otherwise, were from Merkel for it to change its view. Continue reading

Germany warns it could pull its NATO troops out of Turkey base

Source: Spacewar

 

Berlin on Monday slammed Ankara’s refusal to allow German lawmakers to visit a NATO base near Syria and warned it could move its troops elsewhere.

The German foreign ministry described as “absolutely unacceptable” Turkey’s latest ban on a visit to the Incirlik base in southern Turkey, used by the international coalition fighting the Islamic State group.

Germany has about 250 military personnel stationed there, flying Tornado surveillance missions over Syria and refuelling flights for partner nations battling IS jihadists. Continue reading

Erdoğans Transition

BERLIN/ANKARA (Own report) – The German government is negotiating new German Turkish arms deals, as was confirmed by the German Ministry of Economics. Brigitte Zypries (SPD), Minister of the Economy, spoke with the CEO of Rheinmetall weapons manufacturer about upgrading the Turkish Leopard battle tank. “In principle,” such deals with NATO partners “can not to be restricted,” according to Berlin. The German government is also seeking to re-invigorate German-Turkish economic cooperation, to strengthen bilateral relations. Germany does not want to loose Turkey as a “bridge” connecting Germany and the EU to the Middle East. Under President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan, Ankara is not only strengthening the country’s economy and, in the long run, make it one of the world’s top ten economies (“Vision 2023”), he is also planning to transform the country into an independent regional power, forming alliances as it chooses – no longer dependent on the western states. The reorientation of its foreign policy is accompanied by the country’s transformation into a presidential dictatorship. Continue reading

US Marines in Syria to defend Kurds against Turkey

The US has sent a group of US Marines armed with eight-wheeled Stryker armored carriers to northern Syria as a buffer between Syrian Kurds and Turkish forces, after Turkish air strikes killed 20 members of the US-backed Kurdish YPG (People’s Protection Units) militia, injured 18 and destroyed the local Kurdish command headquarters. Clashes broke out between Turkish and Kurdish forces after the air strikes.

It was the second time American armored troops had stepped in to separate Turkish and the Kurdish YPG militia that leads the Syrian Democratic Force (SDF), to which the Americans assign a major role in the offensive to capture Raqqa from ISIS. On March 17, US Marines advanced towards the northern Syrian town of Manbij when the Turkish army was on the point of fighting the Kurdish militia for control of the town. Continue reading