Is Turkey in Collusion with ISIS?

Turkey is officially a Western powers’ ally in the fight against ISIS. Nevertheless, we have seen that many facts suggest a different reality. The reason of a plausible tacit complicity between the Turkish government and the Islamic State lies on the Kurdish people. Indeed, the Kurds have always been perceived by Turkey as a great threat, especially after the PKK started to engage in a terrorist war against the government in 1984. To President Erdogan they clearly represent an obsession, and he’s ready to do whatever is needed to prevent them from getting a possible independence, including a secret collusion with ISIS.
His ambiguous attitude has risen after all the terrorist attacks occurred in Turkey so far, for example. In these cases, Erdogan has never taken a firm position against ISIS. On the contrary, he has always tried to seize the opportunity and condemn the Kurds, if possible.
Another fact is that even though Turkey has a strong army and a long sealed border with Syria, it has never tried to stop ISIS from replenishing its ranks, while it has always prevented the Kurds from crossing that border. If it can do it with the Kurds, there is no reason to think that it cannot do the same with the Islamic State’s militants.
We have also seen how at the end of last year Russia tried to show to the Western powers that Erdogan has an illegal oil trade with ISIS. President Putin affirmed, among the other things, that the shooting down of the Russian warplane on November 24 was motivated by a will of protecting the traffic.
Both Erdogan and the US denied all the Russian accusations and labelled them as ridiculous, even though it’s quite hard to really believe that the US is completely unaware of this very probable collusion.
Nevertheless, things are changing. After Russia delivered a letter on March to the UN Security Council reporting many facts that should prove an illegal oil trade between Turkey and ISIS, several different countries in the Council are considering them seriously, according to strategic analyst Tugce Varol.
The accusations reported in the letter, added to the fact that Russia wants to upgrade this case international, leave little doubt that a secret collusion between Turkey and the Islamic State is a real possibility that cannot be ignored anymore.

Federico Tirindelli

Annunci

Turkey and ISIS: The Oil Case (Part 2)

Erdogan-petrolio-Isis1

www.greenreport.it/news/energia/abbattimento-del-bombardiere-russo-leterna-guerra-per-il-petrolio-e-il-kurdistan/

Last time we saw how Russia is trying to show to the rest of the world that President Erdogan has a traffic of smuggled oil with ISIS. In the past, Russia was a fundamental oil exporter to Turkey, but since their relation deteriorated, Russia has been replaced with ISIS. Turkey has a desperate need of oil, while ISIS has a desperate need of cash, so the deal perfectly suits the necessities of both parts. Furthermore, we saw in the last post that the US denied all the Russian accusations. Nevertheless, it’s hard to believe that the US doesn’t know anything about the traffic, especially because of the satellite imagery, not to mention the fact that Allied air strikes sometimes hit the oil trucks (observer.com/2016/02/deal-with-the-devil-turkey-props-up-isis-by-buying-its-stolen-oil/).

 

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osnetdaily.com/2015/08/britains-secret-ties-to-governments-firms-behind-isis-oil-sales/

 

Looking at more recent events, it’s noteworthy to consider a letter that the Permanent Representative of the Russian Federation to the UN addressed to the Secretary General and the President of the Security Council. The letter is dated 29/01/2016 and is titled “Illegal trading in hydrocarbons by ISIL”.
It reports many facts accusing Turkey of a clear collaboration with ISIS, among which the most important are: the use of tankers from BMZ Group Denizcilik ve İnşaat A.Ş, owned by Bilal Erdogan, the son of the Turkish President, and other family members; the legalization of the crude in the Turkish territory, which then ends up in other parts of the world without being traceable; the donations from private individuals and Islamic organizations, especially from Gulf States and Turkey, which are a key source in providing assistance to fighters, not to mention the accounts they have opened at several major Turkish banks; the detection of three major Turkish banks doing money transferring transactions with ISIL linked groups; and last, but not least, the provision of weapons and ammunition to ISIL through parts of the Syrian border with Turkey and Iraq.
Dr Tugce Varol, strategic analyst working on Energy Security Policies of Russia, Turkey, Middle East and Central Asia thinks that even though the Western powers  disregarded the first Russian accusations of Turkey at the end of last year, now many countries in the UN Security Council are considering them seriously. According to Dr Varol, the fact that Russia has decided to carry its accusations to the UN Security Council level is noteworthy, as it means that Russia wants to upgrade the Erdogan case international (www.huffingtonpost.com/aydoaean-vatanda/russian-letter-to-unsc-cl_b_9502784.html).

 

United-Nations-Security-Council

www.borgenmagazine.com/un-security-council-collective-security/

Federico Tirindelli

Migrant issues in EU-Turkey relations

I have focused on migration and the new walls in Europe.

I have analysed various official sources to find the different points of view and the decision of the European Commission.

The basis of my research is focused on the border between Turkey and Syria and consequently the ISIS issues and the war in Syria.

This has led to mass migration into Europe.

The EU is discussing how to stop this migrant flow and has drafted an agenda to manage the crisis.

The agenda proposes:

  • Tripling the presence on the sea
  • A new system of emergency solidarity to relocate asylum seekers
  • Mobilization of the European budget to address the refugee crisis
  • A new coordination and cooperation framework for the Western Balkans
  • A new partnership with Turkey
  • A new European border and coast Guard

If external borders are secure, Europe can keep the Schengen system of free border controls.

Even though the EU had prepared the agenda, Angela Merkel took initiative of direct discussions between herself and the Turkish President, to the surprise of the majority of the other European leaders.

Merkel agreed the “one in, one out” proposal and the sum of 3 Billion Euros for Turkey, without the acceptance of all 28 Member States.

This decision is a risk for Merkel’s reputation and position, and is leading to the breakup of the European project and pushing Britain out of the Union.

Given the situation, the European Commission has set out the priority actions on the agenda to be implemented immediately:

  • Permanent exchange of information and effective cooperation
  • Limiting secondary movements
  • Increasing reception capacity
  • Managing the migration flows together
  • Border management
  • Tackling smuggling and trafficking

Sorgente: Furlan Barbara     Migrant issues in EU-Turkey relations

Russia total war! (part 2)

Russia total war! (part 2)

The international and diplomatic plan

Last week we dealt with the economic embargo put by Moscow to Ankara. Today we will handle the second and the third points of the Russian retaliation, which are closely related with the international issues.

On international and diplomatic plan, Russia started to isolate Turkey throughout the action of the President Putin,  that of his Foreign affairs Minister, Mr. Sergey Lavrov, and with its ambassadors around the world.

Briefly, they talked how Turkey committed a mistake and refused to talk with Moscow, neither did an official apologize, but only accused Russia of air space violations and then hide itself behind the “NATO shield”.

The recent events once again proved that NATO membership is the defining item of Turkish foreign policy character. Turkey is a NATO-member country since ’50, but however Ankara has long sought alternatives to the West. It was not many years ago that Ankara was talking about membership of the Shanghai Five. Today, ironically, Ankara’s only guaranteed ally is NATO. No Muslim country or the Organization of Islamic Cooperation (OIC) has yet said a positive word in favor of Turkey about its tension with Russia. It is clear: Without NATO, Turkey would be alone.

But, why the NATO refused an open and clear support to Turkey? Maybe because the sudden changing  of direction into Obama’s administration.

John Kerry, US Secretary of State, aligned himself  with a Russian plan to keep Mr. Assad in power indefinitely. The US has conceded publicly that the Syrian leader can stay “for now”, and it’s clear also that they have used considerable pressure to compel their allies to go along with the Munich agreement.

So in this way, the NATO would have been completely alone, without the Western States support, facing the Russians pressures against Turkey.

In this sense, following the Russian violation, the NATO Secretary-General  Jens Stoltenberg only called on Russia “to act responsibly and to fully respect NATO airspace” but also urged for calm and a de-escalation of tensions between Moscow and Ankara; just political words from a military organization.

jens-stoltenberg
Jens Stoltenberg

Vladimir Putin’s decision to increase military support to Bashar al‑Assad has encouraged Damascus to believe it can now win the war outright. Doubtless, this is one reason why the Russians have sought to broker a ceasefire at security talks in Munich, in order to consolidate the regime’s gains.

This mix of western indecision and Russian strength could be the fatal mix of a dangerous future.

 

However, nowadays…….sfyoq

Morosin Walter

 

Credits:

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/worldnews/middleeast/syria/12157045/The-Syrian-war-enters-a-dangerous-phase.html

http://www.bbc.com/news/world-middle-east-35690229

http://www.theguardian.com/world/2015/nov/16/g20-barack-obama-and-vladimir-putin-agree-to-syrian-led-transition

http://www.bbc.com/news/world-europe-35209987

Images credits:

 

Continue reading “Russia total war! (part 2)”

Turkey and ISIS: The Oil Case (Part 1)

 

ErdoganISIS2_0

davidstockmanscontracorner.com/erdogan-busted-the-isis-oil-pipeline-through-ceyhan/

Last week we saw that there are many facts suggesting a tacit complicity of the Turkish government with ISIS, which is due to a deep hatred that President Erdogan feels towards the Kurds.
This time we will have a look to a more specific reality concerning this topic, which deals with the issue of oil.
At the end of last year, the Russian Defense Ministry showed that there’s a vast illegal oil trade lead by ISIS, in which Turkey “is the main buyer of smuggled oil coming from Iraq and Syria”, according to Deputy Defense Minister Anatoly Antonov (www.rt.com/news/324263-russia-briefing-isis-funding/). He said that many live oil pipelines, made up of thousands of oil trucks, are used to let the oil enters the Turkish territory.
This oil smuggling is a fundamental source of income for ISIS: it’s used in part to finance its fighters’ salaries and the welfare system’s high costs (www.nbcnews.com/storyline/isis-terror/russia-accuses-turkeys-erdogan-involvement-isis-oil-trade-n472596).
The ministry also added that Russia succeeded in reducing the IS income thanks to its anti-terrorist operation, which started on September 30 (www.rt.com/news/324263-russia-briefing-isis-funding/).
Putin affirmed that Turkey’s decision to shoot down a Russian warplane on November 24 was aimed at protecting its oil trade with ISIS.
President Erdogan denied that, stating that his decision to shoot down the warplane was motivated by a violation of Turkish airspace after 10 warnings to leave had been sent. He also denied his oil traffics with ISIS and stated that he would resign if it was proven to be true (europe.newsweek.com/turkeys-erdogan-vows-resign-if-putin-proves-isis-oil-claims-399780?rm=eu).

 

605x328putin_erdogan-2

formiche.net/2014/12/11/putin-erdogan-russia-cina/

The US denied all the Russian claims, labelling them as absurd and defending its Turkish ally against Russia’s accusations.
Steve Warren, the Pentagon spokesman, stated that Turkey had demonstrated to be a reliable partner against ISIS, helping the US in many ways, such as hosting their aircraft and conducting strikes, among the others (www.rt.com/news/324263-russia-briefing-isis-funding/).
Russia was also accused by the US of hitting other anti-Assad rebel groups, among which there were some fighters supported by Turkey (www.nbcnews.com/storyline/isis-terror/russia-accuses-turkeys-erdogan-involvement-isis-oil-trade-n472596).
Next time we will see how the situation has been evolving in more recent times.

f_obama_putin_150928.nbcnews-ux-1080-600

www.nbcnews.com/video/obama-and-putin-share-a-handshake-for-the-cameras-533905475830

Federico Tirindelli

 

Turkey and ISIS

An ambiguous relation

 

blog.zingarate.com/vivereistanbul/turchia-erdogan-califfo-sultano.html

 

The relation between Turkey and ISIS is quite controversial and surrounded by ambiguity.

If it is true that, from an official point of view, Turkey is fighting against ISIS, from the other side there are many facts that suggest a complicity or a tacit approval of the ISIS operations by the Turkish government.

Before dealing with the analysis of this ambiguous relation, it is necessary to understand the Kurdish issue. After the wane of the Ottoman Empire and the foundation of the Republic of Turkey by Mustafa Kemal Ataturk, the Kurdish people were forced to live in a formally united State but made up of different ethnic groups, where everyone had to accept being forcibly integrated into the single identity of the majority.

What really matters to the present Turkish government is a possible independence of the Kurdish people, which President Erdogan fears more than anything else. In his vision, this fact would lead to a loss of the territorial integrity and perhaps to an institutional destabilization.

From 1984, the Kurdistan Workers’ Party, or PKK, has engaged in a terrorist war against Turkey, and even though in the mid-2013 a cease-fire was declared, the war started again in the mid-2015, after the Turkish army bombed the PKK positions in northern Iraq (www.worldaffairsjournal.org/article/trouble-turkey-erdogan-isis-and-kurds).

The terrorist attack in Istanbul that occurred last January, like the two previous attacks in Ankara and Suruc, showed the precarious position of Turkey in its fighting against ISIS. After these attacks, there was never a clear message of unity from the government. After the Ankara attack, there was instead a joint condemnation of the Kurdish militants with ISIS, which Erdogan had to dismiss after being criticised. Before the Istanbul attack, Ahmet Davutoglu, the Turkish prime minister, told that “the security forces’ lethal crackdown in indigenous Kurdish minority areas would continue indefinitely”(www.theguardian.com/world/2016/jan/12/istanbul-blast-time-erdogan-face-islamic-state-menace-kurds), thus emphasizing the fight against the Kurds instead of ISIS.

President Erdogan has also been crititcised by many Western countries  of not doing enough to prevent such a flow of migration of refugees through the Turkish territory, not to mention the southwards flow of ISIS recruits from Europe and North America (www.theguardian.com/world/2016/jan/12/istanbul-blast-time-erdogan-face-islamic-state-menace-kurds). King Abdullah of Jordan said: “The fact that terrorists are going to Europe is part of Turkish policy” (www.independent.co.uk/news/world/middle-east/king-of-jordan-abdullah-says-turkey-isis-terrorists-and-unleashing-them-europe-erdogan-a6954841.html).

 

washington.cbslocal.com/2013/05/16/obama-i-have-complete-confidence-in-holder/

 

In his recent visit to Washington DC, Erdogan strongly criticised the US for supporting the People’s Protection Units, or YPG, in the war against ISIS, and labelled the Kurdish group in Syria as terroristic (foreignpolicy.com/2016/03/31/erdogan-washingtons-closest-allies-against-islamic-state-are-just-as-dangerous-as-the-islamic-state/).

 

www.sott.net/category/16-Puppet-Masters

 

The Turkish President sees YPG as a great threat, because of their support to PKK (www.worldaffairsjournal.org/article/trouble-turkey-erdogan-isis-and-kurds). About this point, the leader of the Peoples Democratic Party (HDP) in Turkey Selahattin Demirtas accused the government of being responsible for training and arming ISIS and all other terrorist organizations in Syria (sana.sy/en/?p=72342).

It is noteworthy that during last year summer, after the Kurdish forces rescued the Syrian town of Tel Abyad from ISIS, the Turkish government decided to set up a 30-km-deep buffer zone to prevent a Kurdish control of their own country, instead of fighting ISIS. It is also noteworthy that if we look at the Turkish border, ISIS has always been able so far to replenish its ranks, while the Kurds have not. If we consider that Turkey, with a long sealed border with Syria and the second-largest army in NATO, has always been able to prevent the Kurds from crossing that border, there is no reason why it cannot prevent ISIS militants from doing it too (www.worldaffairsjournal.org/article/trouble-turkey-erdogan-isis-and-kurds).

It is true that some measures against ISIS were adopted, like the capture and deportation of 2,896 people with suspected ISIS links last January, but they were not enough to prevent ISIS from exploiting the Turkish territory for their recruitments and as a transit point to Europe (www.theguardian.com/world/2016/jan/12/istanbul-blast-time-erdogan-face-islamic-state-menace-kurds).

All of what has been reported so far doesn’t imply that Turkey likes ISIS or that they have something in common, but it’s surely true that President Erdogan sees ISIS as “less evil” than the Kurds (www.worldaffairsjournal.org/article/trouble-turkey-erdogan-isis-and-kurds). It means that if it’s necessary to let ISIS carry on its operations in order to prevent the Kurds from obtaining their independence, the Turkish President is ready to do that.

Of course, if Turkey wants to stay within NATO, it must soon or late revisit its positions and stop with its ambiguity, otherwise its allies, and especially the US, will probably take the appropriate measures (www.worldaffairsjournal.org/article/trouble-turkey-erdogan-isis-and-kurds).

kurir.mk/en/?p=199

Federico Tirindelli

Migrant issues in EU-Turkey relations

isisMigrant issues in EU-Turkey relations

I have focused on migration and the new walls in Europe.
I have analysed various official sources to find the different points of view and the decision of the European Commission.
The basis of my research is focused on the border between Turkey and Syria and consequently the ISIS issues and the war in Syria.
This has led to mass migration into Europe.
The EU is discussing how to stop this migrant flow and has drafted an agenda to manage the crisis.
The agenda proposes:
• Tripling the presence on the sea
• A new system of emergency solidarity to relocate asylum seekers
• Mobilization of the European budget to address the refugee crisis
• A new coordination and cooperation framework for the Western Balkans
• A new partnership with Turkey
• A new European border and coast Guard
If external borders are secure, Europe can keep the Schengen system of free border controls.
Even though the EU had prepared the agenda, Angela Merkel took initiative of direct discussions between herself and the Turkish President, to the surprise of the majority of the other European leaders.
Merkel agreed the “one in, one out” proposal and the sum of 3 Billion Euros for Turkey, without the acceptance of all 28 Member States.
This decision is a risk for Merkel’s reputation and position, and is leading to the breakup of the European project and pushing Britain out of the Union.
Given the situation, the European Commission has set out the priority actions on the agenda to be implemented immediately:
• Permanent exchange of information and effective cooperation
• Limiting secondary movements
• Increasing reception capacity
• Managing the migration flows together
• Border management
• Tackling smuggling and trafficking

Barbara Furlan