TURKEY | WHAT REALLY HAPPENED


TURKEY

Jul 12 08:54

Russian S-400 first batteries to be delivered to Turkey in late 2019: FM

Russia will deliver first batch of S-400 anti-missile defense system batteries to Turkey in late 2019, Turkish Foreign Minister said on Wednesday.

Western allies should not question about Turkey's purchase of Russian S-400 defense system, Mevlut Cavusoglu told reporters in Brussels ahead of a NATO Summit.

"New batteries will arrive towards the end of next year," Cavusoglu said. "Finally, there is no need to question this anymore."

"Not only the United States, but some other NATO allies also express concerns about the deal," the minister said, adding that Ankara understands their technical worries such as "if S-400 systems will detect NATO systems as a foe."

Jul 11 08:37

SYRIAN WAR REPORT – JULY 11, 2018: YPG CARRIES OUT SERIES OF ATTACKS AGAINST TURKISH-BACKED FORCES IN AFRIN

The Kurdish People’s Protection Units (YPG) have claimed that their cells carried out a series of hit and run attacks against Turkey-led forces in the northern Syrian area of Afrin from July 5 to July 8.

One Turkish-backed fighters was reportedly killed by YPG sniper fire at a military point between the settlements of Jinderes and Atma on July 5. Three members of the Hamza Brigade were killed on the road between Rajo and Afrin on July 6. A commander of the Turkish-backed Free Syrian Army (FSA), Mohmmad al-Souleiman, was killed in the Bibil district and an IED explosion killed two fighters in the Shara district on July 7. Two Turkish Army soldiers were reportedly killed in in the Rajo district in a separate attack on the same day.

On July 8, the YPG allegedly carried out a bombing attack on a convoy in the Mabata district killing two fighters.

Jul 10 09:04

Erdogan gains power to appoint Turkey’s central bank governor

Recep Tayyip Erdogan has gained the power to appoint the governor of Turkey’s central bank and hundreds of other senior officials, unnerving markets as the country’s new executive presidency comes into force.

The Turkish leader issued his first set of presidential decrees just hours after being sworn into office, triggering the transition to a muscular system of governance that Mr Erdogan has sought for years. The new model, which was narrowly approved by a contentious referendum last year, has abolished the role of prime minister and given unprecedented powers to the president.

Turkish stocks and bonds tumbled as investors fretted about the new system and Mr Erdogan’s decision to appoint his son-in-law Berat Albayrak to head the newly formed treasury and finance ministry while sidelining Mehmet Simsek and Naci Agbal, two market-friendly figures who held senior posts in the previous government.

Jul 09 09:28

Turkish MPs take oaths as Erdogan assumes sweeping new powers

Turkish lawmakers have taken oaths of office as Recep Tayyip Erdogan starts a new term as president with sweeping new powers granted in last year's narrowly-won referendum.

Members of the Turkish parliament began to take their oaths at the 600-seat legislature in Ankara on Saturday, with the process expected to end on Wednesday.

The new parliament features 295 lawmakers from Erdogan Justice and Development Party (AKP) and 49 from the allied Nationalist Movement Party (MHP).

The main opposition Republican People’s Party (CHP) won 146 seats while the pro-Kurdish Peoples' Democratic Party (HDP) exceeded the 10-percent threshold needed to enter the parliament. With 67 seats, the HDP forms the chamber's second-largest opposition faction.

The number of lawmakers has increased by 50 seats in the new Turkish parliament and thus a majority in the legislature requires 301 votes.

Jul 06 05:09

One Killed, 19 More Wounded in Bomb Blast at Anti-Turkey Protest in Manbij

The Kurdish-language Hawar news reported on Thursday that residents of al-Haya region in Manbij held protest rallies against the Turkish and US military forces' deployment. It added that at least 1 civilian was killed and 22 others were wounded in the explosion. The US and Turkish forces started the 9th stage of their patrolling mission in the region on Wednesday based on a roadmap on Manbij. Last month, the US and Turkish forces started joint patrolling missions in the outskirts of Manbij in Eastern Aleppo. Turkey's Daily Sabah newspaper reported that a convoy of Turkish forces, supported by the US helicopters, has entered Manbij in Northern Syria. Meantime, Sky News also confirmed the start of joint patrolling operations.

Jul 06 05:07

New Turkish Military Convoy Sent to Syrian Borders.

A Turkish military convoy was sent to the borders with Syria to reinforce its positions in occupied Afrin region in Syria's Aleppo province. Turkish news sources reported on Thursday that a large number of military equipment was transferred from Sanliurfa region to Gaziantep in Southern Turkey. They added that the military convoy consisted of 30 military vehicles and personnel carriers moving from Gaziantep to the borders in Syria. Syrian field sources also underlined that the military convoy was sent to reinforce the Turkish army positions in occupied Afrin. The Turkish army is now training 1,000 affiliated forces in Northern Syria to be used in 'Afrin police'. The development came as the Kurdish militants have expressed willingness to cooperate with the Syrian government to force the occupying Turkish forces out of the Northern parts of the country...

Jul 06 02:29

Syrian opposition submits list of constitution committee candidates to UN special envoy

The opposition Syrian Negotiation Commission has prepared jointly with Turkey a list of 50 candidates to be included in the Syrian Constitutional Committee, and submitted it to UN Syria Envoy Staffan de Mistura, the Turkish Foreign Ministry said. "On 5 July, the Syrian Negotiation Commission (SNC) submitted to the UN Special Envoy for Syria the list of 50 candidates, prepared in coordination with Turkey, for members who will represent the opposition in the Constitutional Committee," Spokesperson of the Turkish Ministry of Foreign Affairs Hami Aksoy said. "On the same day, Turkey officially confirmed in writing to the UN Special Envoy for Syria that it supports the list prepared by the SNC," he added. The Syrian National Dialogue Congress, held in Sochi on 30 January 2018, called for the establishment of the 150-member Constitutional Committee, with equal quotas for the Syrian government, opposition and the civil society.

Jul 05 09:25

Kurdish Forces Willing to Cooperate with Damascus to Expel Turkey from Northern Syria

Kurdish militants have shown willingness to cooperate with the Syrian government to force the occupying Turkish forces from the Northern parts of the country.

Field sources referred to the Turkish army's continued occupation of Northern Syria, and said that the Kurdish forces fully agree with the Syrian government's position to drive them out of occupied lands.

Meantime, Sihanouk Dibo, a senior adviser to the Syrian Kurdish leader Salih Muslim in Qamishli, told the Arabic website of RT news channel on Tuesday that Turkey continues its occupation of Afrin, Jarabulus, al-Bab and certain areas in Idlib in Northern Syria, stressing the need for cooperation between the Democratic Union Party (PYD) and the Damascus government to retake sovereignty of Syrian territories.

Meantime, analysts said that the Turkish army's occupation of Northern Syria means interfering in another country's affairs, and meantime increases tensions in the region.

Jul 03 15:16

Saudi religious diplomacy targets Jerusalem

James Dorsey analyses Saudi-UAE efforts to seize control of Israeli-occupied Jerusalem’s Islamic sites from Jordan, which include overtures to Israel and coopting Palestinian collaborators, foremost disgraced former security official Muhammad Dahlan. >>

Jun 29 08:52

More Countries Start Exploring Alternatives To The US World Order

There are two countries that more than others show how the Western world order is undergoing a profound change. Japan and Turkey occupy two distinct and diverse geographical areas, yet they share many of the same strategic choices about their future. Their geopolitical trajectory is increasingly drifting away from Washington and moving closer to China, Russia, India and Iran.

Jun 28 12:36

Russia and Turkey Diversifying Into Gold As The U.S. Borrows Faster Than Entire World Saves

The Russian reduction of Treasury holdings, to $48.7 billion in April 2018 from $102.2 billion in December 2017, has been nothing short of dramatic, though it wasn’t a huge blow to the U.S. Russia’s holdings of American government bonds have long been dwarfed by those of China and Japan, as well as Brazil and some European countries. The U.S., with a debt of almost $21.2 trillion, can afford not to notice fluctuations in the tens of billions of dollars by an authoritarian state’s damage-control efforts and attempts to get away from the dollar.

U.S. Borrowing Faster Than the World Saves

Webmaster's Commentary: 

This impending insolvency is going to hit this country like a ton of bricks, and nothing can be done to stop it, except for its potential confiscation of corporate, and private financial accounts; but even that won't be able to duck this insolvency completely.

Jun 27 11:58

Who Will Call The First Bluff? US Threatens Turkey With Sanctions Over Russian S-400 Purchase

Despite an ostentatious "roll out" ceremony by Lockheed Martin last week in Fort Worth to mark the handover of the first F-35-A Lightning II jet bound for Turkey, the advanced stealth multi-role fighter isn't going anywhere anytime soon as we previously explained after the Senate passed a draft defense bill for FY 2019 that would halt the transfer until the secretary of state certifies that Turkey will not accept deliveries of Russian S-400 'Triumf' air-defense systems.

Following upon previous warnings, the US State Department has again threatened that Turkey will be targeted by sanctions if it receives the S-400 from Russia under a contract finalized between Ankara and Moscow at the end of 2017, said to be worth $2.5 billion.

Jun 26 11:35

Erdogan’s Unsurprising Win May Embolden Turkey’s Anti-Kurdish Aggression

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan’s Sunday election victory will most likely translate into a more aggressive operation in Syria to expel Kurdish rebels from the country, said Nevzat Evrim Önal, a journalist with the Turkish newspaper SoL, and Max Zirngast, an independent writer in Istanbul, in an interview with Radio Sputnik.

Following his victory, in which he secured an absolute majority of votes, Erdogan that his government would continue to respond to those who threaten Turkey via terror organizations. He called on Turks to focus on the future after the election, and renewed his determination to improve rights and freedoms in the country.

Jun 26 06:26

Erdogan's re-election to test Kremlin’s Middle East ambitions

Recep Tayyip Erdogan’s landslide victory in Turkey’s presidential election might pose serious problems for Russia’s leadership, Nezavisimaya Gazeta wrote. Speaking to his supporters in Ankara, Erdogan promised to continue the ‘liberation’ of Syrian lands. Experts told the newspaper they do not rule out that Moscow might have to brace for a rocky road ahead in its relations with Ankara. The Kremlin’s geopolitical and economic projects in the Middle East may face risks from Ankara’s unpredictable policy. The Turkish expert community believes that changes in the country’s foreign policy are indeed possible, and can trouble Russia. "Turkey's foreign policy will certainly undergo some changes.

Jun 26 06:21

Gazprom resumes construction of second line of Turkish Stream pipeline

Russia’s state-run gas giant Gazprom has resumed the laying of the second line of the Turkish Stream gas pipeline on Tuesday, the project’s operator reported. On Tuesday, the Pioneering Spirit vessel resumed the laying of the second line of the Turkish Stream gas pipeline, moving towards the city of Kiyykoy in Turkey, the project’s operator said. After entering the Black Sea on June 20, Pioneering Spirit completed the preparatory work, including launching the stinger and inspecting the pipe laying equipment. In April, the construction of the first line of the sea part of the pipeline was completed. To date 1,161 km of pipes have been laid, which is 62% of the pipeline’s length...

Jun 25 12:06

India devises way to bypass US sanctions, pay for Iran oil

The government is set to revive an alternative payment mechanism to settle a part of its payments for oil imported for Iran over the next few days in a bid to counter the impact of US sanctions imposed on Tehran.

While one option is to go back to the earlier barter-type arrangement that had the tacit approval of the US, the government is also looking at the option of routing the payment through a third country like Turkey, a senior government official told TOI . A similar arrangement had to be dropped when Iran faced sanctions the last time round, prompting the rupee-Iranian rial arrangement, where UCO Bank played a key role in helping Indian refiners such as MRPL and Essar Oil meet their requirements.

Jun 25 09:52

Turkish Army, Allied Militants in Panic over Kurds' Attacks in Northern Syria

The Turkish Army troops and allied militants are reportedly in panic over the Kurdish militias' imminent heavy offensives in Afrin region in Northwestern Aleppo as tensions between the Kurds and Ankara forces are rising, local sources said on Sunday.
The sources said that the Ankara forces have started closing off all the streets across the town of Jandaris in Northeastern Aleppo.

The sources pointed to anguish felt by the Turkish soldiers and their allied militants over the Kurdish militias' surprise attack, adding that the Ankara forces prefer not to wear military uniforms to avoid becoming the target of Kurdish attacks.

The sources further said that the Kurdish militias launched eight heavy offensives against Turkish troops and their allied militants in the region in the past week.

In the meantime, local sources in Rajou in Afrin reported that the Ankara forces have plundered three power generators and telecommunication masts.

Jun 25 08:41

Turkey elections votes RIGGED: Police find car full of FORGED ballot papers

POLICE in Turkey have arrested three people after sacks overflowing with sealed ballot papers were found in a car they were driving adding fuel to speculation today’s election was rigged.

Jun 24 12:12

Erdogan on track to secure 2nd term as president – preliminary results

Incumbent Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan has secured a comfortable lead in the election, preliminary results indicate. The parliamentary election results so far are similar, with a substantial lead for the ruling AK Party.

The initial official results of the Turkish presidential and parliamentary election, held on Sunday, have emerged, signaling an expected win for the incumbent president and his party. To achieve an outright victory and avoid a second round, Erdogan needs to secure more than 50 percent of the vote.

He is currently leading in the polls with 53 percent. In the parliamentary election, his AK Party is also in first place with over 45 percent. Turnout was at 87 percent for both polls, preliminary data shows.

Jun 24 09:43

Turkish Presidential Opponent Sees TV Blackout of Huge Rallies Ahead of Vote

The primary opposition rival for the presidency of Turkey in Sunday’s election held final rallies in the nation only to see state-run telecommunications networks black out his events, said to be attended by millions.

Muharrem Ince, an increasingly popular presidential candidate running against three-time incumbent Recep Tayyip Erdogan, has seen his rallies censored even as his candidacy has gained strength over the past several months.

Turkish Election Likely to Have 2 Rounds, End in Erdogan's Victory - Analysts
The June 24 elections for the both the presidency and the parliament will set the stage — according to Ankara experts — for the nation to rejoin the West, if the increasingly autocratic incumbent Erdogan can be prevented from attaining a fourth term, according to The Atlantic.

Jun 20 08:34

Turkey to receive first F-35 fighter jets despite US Senate decision: FM

Turkey expects that the United States will deliver the first F-35 joint strike fighters on June 21 with a ceremony despite the U.S. Senate decision to block the procurement of the aircraft to the Turkish government, Foreign Minister Mevlüt Çavu?o?lu has said.

“There have been attempts in the U.S. parliament regarding the F-35 delivery. Two fighters will be delivered to us on June 21 and there are also attempts [to block this delivery]. We can’t sustain a healthy relationship as such,” Çavu?o?lu said on June 19 during a live interview with the private broadcaster NTV.

“Come and let’s talk like we did in Manbij. Turkey is an important ally and it cannot be in any entity that would risk NATO. They should not test sanctions by making an excuse of it,” he added.

Jun 19 11:13

As Tensions Rise, Greeks See Sudden 90% Surge In 'Asylum-Seekers' Across Land Border With Turkey

In the last few months, tensions between two NATO member states have escalated dramatically - Turkey has threatened to invade Greek islands, Greece has responded, Turkey has violated Greek airspace 100s of times, and Greeks now see Turkey as the greatest threat to their existence.

And now, in the first five months of 2018, KeepTalkingGreece.com reports that Greece has been Europe’s top entry point for refugees and migrants. According to the European Border and Coast Guard Agency, Frontext, over 19,800 people entered Greece during January – May 2018. At the same time, the land border crossing from Turkey to Greece increased by 90 percent. The majority of these people were Syrians and Iraqis.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

In light of the fact that both countries are NATO members, it would seem that the guy for the job here would be none other than NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg, if he really wants NATO to get its MOJO back.

Stop the squabbling here, get Turkey to behave itself, and not ratchet up international tensions any more than they already are.

Jun 19 10:25

Turkey Finishes Massive Wall On Syrian Border, Paid For With EU Funds

While leftists are throwing a fit over President Trump's proposed border wall with Mexico, they couldn't care less about Turkey's new massive 764-kilometer border wall with Syria paid for with European Union funds.

Jun 19 10:19

No F-35s for Turkey: US Senate blocks sale of fighter jets to Ankara

US Senators have voted to block the sale of F-35s to Turkey, slamming their NATO ally for plans to buy Russian S-400 missile batteries. Ankara warned of “an alternative” should the deal be called off.

The first of the 100 US-made F-35 fighter jets were to be delivered to Turkey on June 21 but now the whole deal might be off as the US Senators voted to kill the sale. The bill, which is yet to be approved by President Donald Trump, passed the Senate floor on Monday, with 85 votes in favor and 10 against.

Jun 18 09:28

Turkish Airstrikes Kill 35 Kurdish PKK in Northern Iraq

Turkish warplanes carried out a Friday night attack in the northern Iraqi region of Qandil. Officials say the airstrikes were directed at the Kurdish PKK movement, which Turkey accuses of having a large presence in this region.

The PKK is considered a banned terrorist group in Turkey. During a ceasefire i recent years, many PKK fighters relocated to northern Iraq, to wait for the results of peace talks. The talks ultimately collapsed, and Turkey resumed strikes on PKK in Turkey, and those who remained in Iraq.

Jun 18 09:05

TURKEY FINISHES MASSIVE WALL ON SYRIAN BORDER, PAID FOR WITH EU FUNDS

While leftists are throwing a fit over President Trump's proposed border wall with Mexico, they couldn't care less about Turkey's new massive 764-kilometer border wall with Syria paid for with European Union funds.

Jun 17 10:10

US-Turkey row: American lawmakers urge Mattis to immediately halt ‘inconceivable’ sale of F-35s

A group of US congressmen has urged Defense Secretary James Mattis to scrap F-35 sales to Turkey, over national security concerns about the NATO ally’s plan to buy Russian S-400 anti-aircraft system, despite Washington’s pressure.

Jun 16 11:28

US Threatens ‘Measures’ Against Syria for Offensive in Southwest

With the Syrian government saying that any more failures to take back the country’s southwest diplomatically would lead them to launch an offensive, the US State Department is threatening “firm and appropriate measures” to punish Syria for any such attempt.

Syria has been expected to launch such an offensive for awhile. Russia negotiated with Israel to get them to agree to keep out of the fighting, in return for Russia urging Iran and Hezbollah to remain out of the border region. The assumption has been for some time this cleared room for the push.

US officials, however, say that Syria would be violating the previous de-escalation deal made between the US, Russia, and Turkey, as some of the offensive would take place in that area. Other de-escalation zones have effectively been erased by government gains, or the wiping out of certain rebels by others.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

Notice that this alleged "de-escalation deal", for some bizzare reason, does not seem to involve the sovereign state of Syria; only Russia, Turkey, and the US appear to be named.

But we all understand the simple translation of these Washingtonese statements; the US government is looking for any excuse with which to justify a full-scale invasion of Syria, and to affect regime change in Damascus.

However, there is a 600 lb gorilla, draped across the Bosendorfer grand in the living room here, and that is is Russia; the possibility of a misunderstanding, leading to a "hot confrontation" between Russia and the US military in Syria, excalates exponentially, every day the US forces stay on Syrian soil.

Jun 16 08:44

America’s military presence in Syria and its priorities

America’s military presence in Syria has a number of goals, the most important of which are to surround Iran and limit its influence in the region; to ensure a bigger share for Washington and its allies — the Kurdish movement — in any final deal over Syria, as expressed frankly by Mattis; and to curb Turkey’s activity in northern Syria, which always comes at the expense of the Kurds, especially its presence east of the River Euphrates.

Jun 15 07:41

SYRIAN WAR REPORT – JUNE 15, 2018: RUSSIA, TURKEY REPORTEDLY REACH AGREEMENT ON TELL RIFAAT

Russia and Turkey have reached an agreement on the situation in the town of Tell Rifaat in the province of Aleppo, the London-based newspaper al-Araby al-Jadeed reported on June 14.

Under the agreement, units of the Turkish military will allegedly be deployed in Tell Rifaat side by side with the Russian Military Police, which was deployed there a few months ago. The Syrian Arab Army (SAA) and the Kurdish People Protection Units (YPG) will withdraw from the town. Members of Turkish-backed militant groups will not be allowed to enter the area.

The agreement is allegedly aimed at de-escalating the situation and allowing civilians to return to their houses in the town.

Jun 14 19:59

Erdogan hopes for ‘joint production’ of S-500 with Russia, even as S-400 is still being delivered

It seems the threat on sanctions for not buying US weapons didn't work.
Info on the S-500:
RUSSIAN S 500 BREAKS 'GROUND TO AIR' STRIKE RECORD

Jun 14 08:28

Turkish President Warns of War Between Islam and Christianity

The world may be heading “towards a war between the cross and the crescent,” warned Turkish president Recep Tayyip Erdogan (shown) in a Saturday Istanbul speech. Erdogan, an Islamist in a Western suit who’s given to scimitar-rattling, was responding to recent measures Austria took against jihadism. As the AFP reports:

President Recep Tayyip Erdogan on Saturday strongly criticised Austria's move to close mosques and expel Turkish-funded imams, slamming the decision as anti-Islamic and promising a response.

“These measures taken by the Austrian prime minister are, I fear, leading the world towards a war between the cross and the crescent,” Erdogan said in a speech in Istanbul.

The crescent is a symbol associated with Islam.

His comments came the day after the Austrian government announced it could expel up to 60 Turkish-funded imams and their families and would shut down seven mosques as part of a crackdown on “political Islam”, triggering fury in Ankara.

Jun 13 12:23

TURKEY IN CONTACT WITH IRAN OVER QANDIL OPERATION, MINISTER SAYS

Turkey is in contact with Iran about conducting a possible military operation against Kurdistan Workers Party (PKK) militants in the northern Iraq region of Qandil, close to the Iranian border, Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu said.

"We are in contact with Iran," Cavusoglu told broadcaster Haberturk. "PKK is a threat to them as well. Qandil is very close to the Iran border...We will improve cooperation with Iran."

Jun 12 14:15

How U.S. And Turkey Determine The Fate Of Kurds

Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu during the meeting with his U.S. counterpart Mike Pompeo agreed on Syria’s city of Manbij roadmap, providing for the withdrawal of the Kurdish militia linked to the Kurdistan Workers’ Party or PKK on June 4.

Jun 12 11:57

The “Manbij Model”, Turkey-US Deal for Northeastern Syria

So far, so good, but the problem is that the SDF militia that would prospectively continue to administer “Rojava’s” “layered decentralization” is nothing more than a thinly “diverse” front of Arab collaborators barely concealing the reality of a Kurdish-run “deep state” (or permanent military, intelligence, and diplomatic bureaucracy) protected by over 20 American bases and an undisclosed number of French ones. Ironically, the Kurds took up arms against the democratically elected and legitimate Syrian government on the supposed basis that the minority Alawites had hijacked the country’s “deep state” and were exploiting it for their own self-interested ends at everyone else’s expense, though the fact of the matter is that it’s now the Kurds – and never was the Alawites – who are actually doing this via the “federalization” of “Rojava” as enforced by the US-created SDF.

Jun 12 10:01

‘Will use if needed’: Erdogan says Turkey didn’t buy S-400 from Russia ‘to keep them in store’

Turkey didn’t acquire the Russian-built S-400 air defense systems for them to collect dust and may use them, President Recep Tayyip Erdogan has said, adding the purchase was to reduce Ankara’s dependency on US arms supplies.

Jun 08 09:57

Erdogan Vows to Strike Iraq if Government Can't Clear Kurdish Militants

Turkish forces will attack areas in Iraq if the government in Baghdad is unable to "clear" them of armed Kurdish groups, Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan said in an interview with CNN Turk Thursday.

Qandil, Sinjar, and Makhmur will be targeted by Turkish forces should Baghdad not rid them of Kurdish forces, Erdogan said.

On Thursday, polling group Gezici said that Erdogan is unlikely to attain a first-round win in Turkey's upcoming elections and that the president's AKP Party is projected to lose its majority in Parliament when Turks go to vote on June 24. In April, the Turkish leader called for snap elections in order to expand the authority of the Turkish executive branch.

Jun 08 06:48

Erdogan says Turkey will strike northern Iraq if Baghdad does not clear Kurdish militants

Turkey will strike Kurdish militant camps in the mountains of northern Iraq in Qandil, Sinjar and Makhmur if the Iraqi central government does not clear the area of militants, President Tayyip Erdogan said on Thursday.

Speaking in an interview with broadcaster CNN Turk, Erdogan said Turkey may strike Qandil “at any moment one evening.”

Turkey regularly carries out cross-border operations against the outlawed Kurdistan Workers Party (PKK) in northern Iraq, where the group is based in the Qandil mountains. Ankara has also threatened to launch military operations in northern Iraq’s Sinjar region.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

Iraq is still in chaos, due to both the horrific fighting it has experienced, and a recent election, which has gone (at least, from the US government perspective), shambolically bad, potentially featuring a majority voting block controlled by Muqtada Al Sadr.

I have to wonder if Erdogan believes that this is the pivotal moment when he can snip off some Northern Iraqi territory, after the Kurds are "neutralized", and claim it as Turkey's own, as it has with bits of Syria.

Jun 06 08:53

Turkey Uses Gold Bullion To Stabilise Its Currency And Economy

Turkey’s economy has been in a tailspin with an inflationary currency, but the country is using something rare to help stabilise itself: gold.

In late 2011, Turkey started to allow commercial banks to use gold instead of the Turkish lira for their required deposits at the central bank. These deposits are known as reserve requirements and help ensure that the banks are capitalised.

Over the past six-or-so years, Turkey’s central bank has accumulated an additional 400 metric tonnes of gold. That’s a lot of yellow bricks – more than what Britain has – and the sizeable stash has the possibility to take the edge off the crisis.

To put the Turkish gold haul in perspective, there are 10 million ounces of gold – roughly 311 tonnes – at the Bank of England, according to the New York-based financial consulting firm CPM Group.

Jun 05 12:07

Kurds left in the cold as US & Turkey agree on ‘roadmap’ for Syrian city pullout

Ankara and Washington say they have agreed on details of a withdrawal of US-backed Kurdish militia from northern Syria, as visiting Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu declared further US support to the Kurds “unacceptable.”

Cavusoglu was in Washington on Monday, meeting with US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo to discuss Syria as well as US-Turkish relations. The State Department confirmed the agreement on a “road map” for the city of Manbij, using dry diplomatic language.

At the press conference following the meeting with Pompeo, however, Cavusoglu was far more direct. The city of Manbij would be secured by both Turkish and US forces, he said, and the roadmap will be implemented in other parts of Syria as well, according to Reuters and several Turkish outlets.

Further US support for the Kurdish YPG (People’s Protection Units) militia was “unacceptable,” the Turkish FM declared.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

Translation: Turkey and the US government have just agreed to balkanize Syria, in Mambij, as the "base" for attempting further destabilization against Al Assad and Damascus.

So we find, yet again, that the Kurds are getting both screwed and demonized by both countries; just where, please, are the Kurds supposed to go, if they are getting thrown out of both Turkey and Syria, particularly those who are not advocating, or participating, in any violence against either Turkey or Syria?!?

Jun 01 07:49

'Just the Start': US-Turkey F-35 Row May Be Followed by Sanctions - Prof

Ankara may kick US troops out of Incirlik if Washington continues with its "wrong actions" in Syria, Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu said; the diplomat also noted that Ankara would go elsewhere for jets if the US doesn't deliver the F-35. Political scientist Kerim Has thinks this may be the beginning of a far more serious diplomatic conflict.

May 29 11:08

Israel Wants US to Keep F-35 'Upgrade Capabilities' Secret From Turkey – Reports

Israel and the United States are holding talks on the supply of F-35 stealth fighter jets to Turkey amid uncertainties over the fate of the deliveries in the US, Haaretz reported.

According to a top Israeli defense official, the Jewish state seeks to remain the only country in the region with F-35 jets to maintain its military’s qualitative edge. The discussions between Israel and the United States have also reportedly touched upon the jet’s performance-enhancing software; unnamed sources confirmed to Haaretz that the matter is “part of the negotiations,” while Israel has denied having talks over the F-35 deal, under which Turkey is expected to obtain 100 stealth fighter jets.

May 28 12:03

Russia And Turkey Reach Deal On "Southern Stream" Gas Pipeline, Infuriate Washington

One and a half years after Russia and Turkey signed a deal to build the strategic "Turkish Stream" gas pipeline in October 2016, putting an end to a highly contentious period in Russia-Turkish relation which in late 2015 hit rock bottom after the NATO-member state shot down a Russian jet over Syria, on Saturday Russian state energy giant Gazprom and the Turkish government reached a deal on the construction of the land-based part of the Turkish Stream branch that will bring Russian gas to European consumers.

May 25 13:58

Breaking: Syrian Army starts attacking northern Latakia after Turkish troops enter

The Syrian Arab Army (SAA) has begun attacking the northern countryside of the Latakia Governorate, following the entrance of the Turkish military into the Jabal Al-Akrad region.

According to a military source in Latakia, the Syrian Army fired several missiles towards the jihadist positions in Jabal Al-Tuffahiyah, scoring several direct hits in the process.

May 25 09:33

Is the US out as Turkey’s top Western arms dealer?

Britain may replace the U.S. as Turkey’s major Western weapons supplier, as the two European nations are set to take a “strategic” turn in an already growing defense relationship.

Turkey and Britain have been negotiating a comprehensive trade agreement in anticipation for the latter’s exit from the European Union.

According to a British diplomat in Ankara, the two NATO allies agree on the importance of “doing the maximum in their capacity in the field of defense.”

“Both partners have a long-term, strategic view of their cooperation on defense technologies,” he said.

May 24 07:00

Israel Says Europe Can ‘Go to a Thousand, Thousand Hells’ for Criticizing Violence Against Protesters

"Let them go to a thousand thousand hells," Steinitz told a local radio station, calling the EU hypocritical, according to Israeli newspaper Haaretz. "The EU is now sucking up to Iran and will help [Tehran] against U.S. sanctions."
Note: That attitude explains a multitude of actions and attitudes. Does Israel have a right to exist? (on Palestinian land)

May 23 11:23

Japan, Russia, Turkey bring potential U.S. tariff retaliation to $3.5 billion

Japan, Russia and Turkey have warned the United States about potential retaliation for its tariffs on steel and aluminum, the World Trade Organization said on Tuesday, bringing the total U.S. tariff bill to around $3.5 billion annually.

May 23 09:46

Syria lays out terms for rapprochement with Turkey

According to the Deputy FM, Syrian-Turkish relations were destroyed by Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan in 2012.

Miqdad accused of Erdogan of getting “politically ambitious,” adding that “he does not think about the consequences of supporting armed groups in Syria. He destroyed a neighboring state and began the Turkish occupation of Afrin.”

“We want the Turkish people to support the process of reconciliation and to have their government stop supporting the terrorists in Syria,” Miqdad added.

May 21 13:31

Northeastern Syria: Militants Continue Plundering Public Assets, Transfer Infrastructures to Turkey

Tahrir al-Sham Hay'at (the Levant Liberation Board or the Al-Nusra Front) continued looting infrastructures in Western Idlib to sell them later in Turkey.

Tahrir al-Sham Hay'at and Turkistani Party are plundering railway lines and power cables in al-Rouj Plain in Western Idlib.

Local sources reported that the railway was one of the most important communication lines between al-Rouj Plan and Idlib city, adding that the terrorists' move has sparked a wave of anger among the Western Idlib's residents.

The sources further said that the terrorists transfer the stolen infrastructures made of steel and copper to Turkey to sell them in the country's market.

May 21 11:25

Turkey Repatriates All Gold From The US In Attempt To Ditch The Dollar

After Venezuela, Germany, Austria and the Netherlands prudently repatriated a substantial portion (if not all) of their physical gold held at the NY Fed or other western central banks in recent years, one month ago Turkey announced that it too has decided to repatriate its gold stored in the US Federal Reserve and deliver it to the Istanbul Stock Exchange, according to reports in Turkey's Yeni Safak. As we reported at the time, it wouldn't be the first time Turkey has asked the NY Fed to ship the country's gold back: in recent years, Turkey repatriated 220 tons of gold from abroad, of which 28.7 tons was brought back from the US last year.

May 21 10:25

Erdo?an: Israeli actions would put Nazis to shame

Organization of Islamic Cooperation calls for international force to be deployed to protect Palestinians in Gaza and urges UN to investigate killings on strip's border; 'Children of those subjected to torture in concentration camps are now attacking Palestinians with methods that would put Nazis to shame,' Turkish president charges.

May 19 16:36

TURKISH PRESIDENT VISITS UK TO REMIND EVERYONE HE STILL WANTS TO PUNISH CRITICAL SPEECH

I'm not sure why any nation with at least a passing respect for civil liberties would continue treating Turkish president Recep Tayyip Erdogan as a world leader worth discussing ideas with. Erdogan rolled into the United States with his entourage of thugs and thought he could have critics beaten and unfriendly journalists tossed from press conferences. He continually petitions other countriesto punish their own citizens for insulting him.

May 19 11:15

Turkey urges Muslim nations to stand with Palestinians

Turkey’s Tayyip Erdogan calls on Muslim world to back Palestinians against Israel’s 'cruelty' in Gaza and US' 'wrong' decision to recognize Jerusalem as Israel's capital and move its embassy there.

May 19 09:58

Erdogan likens Israeli ‘brutality’ in Gaza to Nazi murder of Jews

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan on Friday compares Israel’s actions against the Palestinians in Gaza to the Nazi persecution of the Jews in World War II.

“There is no difference between the atrocity faced by the Jewish people in Europe 75 years ago and the brutality that our Gaza brothers are subjected to,” he tells a summit of Islamic leaders in Istanbul.

Webmaster's Commentary: 
May 18 09:27

Turkey rules out returning Afrin to Assad

Turkish Deputy Prime Minister Recep Akda? has ruled out returning the Syrian district of Afrin, captured by Turkish troops and their allies from Syrian Kurdish forces in March, to the Syrian government, Turkish pro-government newspaper Daily Sabah said .

"A free and democratic Syria can only be built without (Syrian President Bashar) Assad. He has killed many of his fellow citizens and brought much suffering to his country," the newspaper quoted Akda? as saying.

He said that Turkey did not wish to remain in the area for the long term and wanted to return it soon to the Syrian people.

"We want to give Afrin back to the local population, who should be there to decide for themselves,” Akda? said.

“A local Afrin council has been set up, which is a decision-making body with local representatives.”

May 18 09:21

"FUCK TURKEY": NETANYAHU SON'S MESSAGE TO ANKARA OVER GAZA MASSACRE

"Fuck Turkey."
That was the message the Israeli prime minister's son gave to the world, as a state-level row with Ankara over Israel's killing of 62 Palestinians on Monday descended into the bawdiest of insults.

Yair Netanyahu posted the message on Instagram on Wednesday, as Israel and Turkey expelled each other's top diplomats after Ankara's condemnation of Israel's live-fire tactics against Gaza protesters.

Benjamin Netanyahu's son included the message in an image similar to the Turkish flag, which has a red background and white star and crescent moon in the centre. The image showed the words “Fuck Turkey” with the crescent moon in place of the letter ‘c’.

#BREAKING: Yair Netanyahu, the son of Israeli PM @netanyahu, published a post against Turkey on his instagram acount pic.twitter.com/KUz22izGlf

— Amichai Stein (@AmichaiStein1) May 16, 2018

Webmaster's Commentary: 

One has to wonder; is this kind of heubristic apartheid on the part of Netanyahu's son, inherited in the DNA, or is it carefully taught?!?

I am recalling the lyrics of a song, written many years ago, by Rogers and Hammerstein, from a show called "South Pacific", talking about prejudice.

And if you are my age (I just turned 69), you might recall your mom or dad making a pilgrimage to the local grocery store, and coming home, triumphantly with a big round thing, called a "record", which one would play on a record player, and I would love the opportunity to learn all the songs from a current Broadway show.

And a couple of lines I remember most vividly from this show are as follows are:

"You've got to be taught
Before it's... to late!
Before you are six... or seven or eight,
To hate all the people your relatives hate,
You've got to be carefully taught!!"

But then, what is to be expected from the son of a Prime Minister in a wretchedly apartheid, self-proclaimed theocracy with nuclear weapons?!?!

Unfortunately and very sadly, what he just posted on instagram, is perfectly predictable, under the circumstances.

May 18 05:54

Turkey vows to bring Israel to ICC over Gaza carnage, Tel Aviv says Ankara will be there first

Turkey suggested that Palestine appeals to the International Criminal Court over Israeli actions in Gaza, saying “crimes against humanity” should not remain unanswered. Tel Aviv said Turkey will appear there first.

May 17 11:15

Erdogan: UN 'finished' after failing to act over Gaza killings

Erdogan accused Israel of "tyranny" and said Turkey would evacuate those injured from Gaza, where hospital facilities are reportedly at a breaking point.

Israel maintains its forces use of live fire is in line with both domestic and international law, arguing the demonstrations are part of the country's conflict with Hamas, which governs the Gaza Strip.

May 17 11:09

U.N. has 'collapsed' in the face of Gaza violence, says Turkey's Erdogan

Turkish President Tayyip Erdogan said on Wednesday that the United Nations had "collapsed" in the face of events in Gaza where Israeli forces killed 60 Palestinian protesters on Monday as the United States relocated its Israel embassy to Jerusalem.

Turkey has been among the most vocal critics of the Israeli use of deadly force against protesters at the Gaza border and of the U.S. decision to open its new embassy in Jerusalem. It called for an emergency meeting of the Organisation of Islamic Cooperation (OIC) in Istanbul on Friday.

Speaking at a dinner on the first day of the Muslim holy month of Ramadan, Erdogan said the majority of the international community had failed to react to the events in Gaza, and warned that remaining silent would mean "opening a very dangerous door."

May 17 11:00

Israel should be taken to International Criminal Court over Gaza massacre: Turkish FM

Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu says the Israeli regime should be brought before the International Criminal Court for the recent massacre of tens of Palestinians during anti-occupation protest rallies along the border between the Gaza Strip and occupied territories.

“Israel should be taken to the International Criminal Court [over the killing of Palestinians]. Since third parties cannot do it, Palestine needs to initiate this,” Cavusoglu said in an interview with state broadcaster TRT on Thursday.

The top Turkish diplomat added, “We are analyzing what kind of legal steps can be taken [against Israel]. Israel should account for its actions.”

He pointed out that the United Nations Human Rights Committee would hold a meeting in Geneva on Friday to decide on a probe into Israeli attacks on Palestinian civilians.

“This crime against humanity should be probed by an independent commission and Israel should account for its actions before the law,” Cavusoglu noted.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

May 17 09:20

'F**k Turkey': Netanyahu's Son Posts Disputable Image Amid Diplomatic Scandal

As an Israeli-Turkish tit-for-tat is in full swing, Israeli prime minister’s son posted a controversial picture under an explicit caption. Although it was quickly taken down, Twitter users seem to have not forgotten.

Yair Netanyahu, a son of Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, had taken to Instagram to post a controversial picture captioned "F**k Turkey," The Haaretz reported.

Responding to the post, Netanyahu’s inner circle said that there was hardly anything unusual about the post, since "Yair Netanyahu is a private person, as is his Instagram account." Whatever the case, the account no longer exists.

May 16 21:37

Turkey calls on the Islamic world to unite against Israel as Erdogan and Netanyahu exchange insults on Twitter over Gaza protest deaths

Turkey is urging on all Islamic nations to unite against Israel at a summit called in the wake of this week's violence on the Gaza border.

More than 60 Palestinians have been killed - many by Israeli live fire - in the last two days amid violent demonstrations over the opening of a new US embassy in Jerusalem.

President Recep Tayyip Erdo?an called the extraordinary summit of the world's main pan-Islamic body, the Organisation of Islamic Cooperation (OIC), as he engaged in a Twitter spat with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu.

Erdo?an said the meeting in Istanbul on Friday 'will give a very strong message to the world' on the cause of the Palestinians, as his Prime Minister, Binali Yildirim, urged Islamic countries to 'review their ties with Israel'.

May 16 11:35

Turkey urges Islamic world to unite against Israel, calls summit

Turkey has urged Islamic countries to review their ties with Israel after dozens of Palestinians were killed by Israeli fire on the Gaza border.

Turkish Prime Minister Binali Yildirim told his ruling party in parliament that Ankara would call an extraordinary summit of the Organization of Islamic Cooperation (OIC).

"Islamic countries should without fail review their relations with Israel," Premier Yildirim said, adding, “The Islamic world should move as one, with one voice, against this massacre."

Yildirim said that Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan, who currently holds the rotating chairmanship of the body, called the OIC summit on Friday.

Yildirim said that after the summit at 3:00 pm a giant rally would be held at the vast Yenikapi meeting area in Istanbul under the slogan of "Stop the Oppression" to express solidarity with the Palestinians.

May 15 10:47

Turkey: US 'as responsible' for Gaza massacre as Israel

The U.S. administration is as responsible for the massacre in Gaza as the Israeli government, Deputy Premier Bekir Bozdag said on Monday.

In a series of tweets, Bozdag said: “The U.S. by moving its Israeli embassy to Jerusalem will not bring comfort, security, stability, and peace to the region; it will increase the already existing discomfort, insecurity, instability, crisis and conflicts; and also trigger many unforeseen negativities.”

He said whatever the U.S. or Israel does or whichever step they take, they are "null and void" for Turkey.

"Jerusalem will eventually be fully liberated; U.S. and Israel will ultimately have to leave Jerusalem to its true owners," Bozdag added.

May 15 09:37

German court dismisses Erdogan’s appeal to ban mocking poem outright, upholds ban on passages

A court in Hamburg on Tuesday rejected Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan’s appeal to ban outright a satirical poem recited two years ago by a comedian on German television. The case has soured already-strained ties between Berlin and Ankara. However, judges also upheld a ban by a lower court in 2017 on certain passages of the poem, read out by German comedian Jan Boehmermann, and which suggested Erdogan watched child pornography, Reuters said.

May 15 08:54

Turkey tells Israeli ambassador to leave the country over Palestinian protest deaths

Turkey has told Israel's ambassador to Ankara to leave the country over the killing of dozens of Palestinian protesters by Israeli forces, according to media reports.

Eitan Naeh was summoned to the foreign ministry in Ankara on Tuesday and asked to leave over the deaths at the Gaza border, Haaretz reported. He was told to leave "for some time," a source told Reuters. He has served in the position since October 2015.

It comes after Turkey recalled its own ambassadors in Israel and the United States "for consultations" over the violence on Monday. President Recep Tayyip Erdogan referred to the crackdown by Israeli forces as "genocide" and called Israel a "terrorist state" while reaffirming his country's commitment to standing in solidarity with the Palestinian people.

May 14 13:51

Turkey recalls ambassadors from US, Israel after over 50 Palestinians killed in Gaza

Ankara has recalled its ambassadors from both Washington and Tel Aviv “for consultations,” the Turkish government has confirmed.

The Turkish government also declared three days of mourning on Monday for over 50 Palestinians killed on the Israel-Gaza border.

Israeli security forces opened fire on demonstrators gathering along the border fence to protest the relocation of the US embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem.

“Turkey will react to this harshly,” said President Recep Tayyip Erdogan.

May 10 08:47

US ‘Will Lose’ From Leaving Iran Deal, Tehran Abiding to Agreement – Erdogan

US President Donald Trump announced plans to withdraw from the Iran nuclear deal on Tuesday, drawing criticism from Iranian President Hassan Rouhani and others who view the move as an escalation and a potential threat to all of the progress made via talks in 2015.

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan said on Wednesday that the US “will lose out” from Trump’s decision to exit the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA), according to Turkey’s state-backed Anadolu news agency, citing Erdogan’s interview with CNN, which is scheduled to be broadcast later today.

The Turkish president hailed the deal as ending years of “negativity” and “raising hope all around the globe.”

May 09 08:40

US set up base in Syria's Manbij after Turkish threats: local official

U.S. forces set up a new base in Manbij in northern Syria some three months ago after Turkish threats to march on the town, a U.S.-backed militia official there said Wednesday.

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan has repeatedly threatened to send troops to Manbij after they expelled the Syrian Kurdish YPG militia from the Afrin region, further to the west, in March.

Ankara regards the YPG as an extension of the outlawed Kurdish PKK, which has waged an insurgency inside Turkey for decades. Turkey has been furious with the United States, its NATO ally, for supporting the YPG in Syria.

May 08 10:26

American Journalist Killed in Turkey for Revealing the Truth Regarding ISIS-Daesh

Serena Shim was at the time reporting on Ayn al-Arab (Kobani), from the Turkish side. She was, in her own words, one of the first, if not the first, on the ground to report on ,“Takfiri militants going in through the Turkish border”. These include not only ISIS but also terrorists from the so-called Free Syrian Army (FSA).

As Shim’s sister Fatmeh Shim stated in 2015, “She caught them bringing in ISIS high-ranked members into Syria from Turkey into camps, which are supposed to be Syrian refugee camps.”

May 07 06:30

"You Can't Control Us" - Turkey Threatens To Retaliate If US Blocks Sale Of 116 F-35s

In the latest sign that Turkey is seriously considering leaving NATO as its relationship with the security bloc (and the US in particular) continues to deteriorate, Turkish Prime Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu warned on Thursday that the country would retaliate if a bill being pushed by House Republicans to block arms sales to Turkey becomes law.

May 04 08:15

‘You’re only supposed to buy NATO-compatible weapons’ – State Dept to Turkey over Russian S-400 deal

Being a NATO member apparently means you can only buy arms and military hardware that the US-led bloc approves. At least, that’s what the State Department said in its latest warning to Ankara over an S-400 air-defense system deal.

The new warning came on Thursday from US State Department spokesperson Heather Nauert, who said that Washington has “serious concerns about Turkey’s potential acquisition” of the S-400 anti-aircraft systems.

Apr 30 11:54

Ankara-Backed Militants Hold Civilians Hostage in Afrin

The Kurdish-language Hawar news reported on Sunday that the Turkish forces have detained 20 civilians, most of them Izadis, in the village of Qatmeh in Shara region in Afrin.

It added that they also tortured the detainees and loot their properties.

Hawar news reported that the Turkish army and militants have asked $2,500 to $5,000 to free any of their hostages.

In a relevant development, the London-based pro-opposition Syrian Observatory for Human Rights (SOHR) reported on Monday that the Ankara-backed Free Syrian Army (FSA) had started blackmailing civilians and looting their assets in Afrin region in Northwestern Aleppo amid reports on the Turkish Army's move in replacing locals in Afrin with Eastern Ghouta terrorists.

Apr 27 14:12

Gold Leaving US Vaults: Signs of Upcoming Currency War and Armed Conflict

An armed conflict with Iran might be much closer than generally believed. The nuclear deal has been honored, to everyone’s satisfaction but to Washington’s chagrin. Iran undoubtedly has no military capability that would be a threat to the US. It has never been responsible for any terrorist acts committed abroad or things like that. But it has done something unforgivable in the eyes of the US. It has threatened the USD. That’s what Washington cannot accept, because if it does not support the dollar, there will be problems financing the US government’s huge federal debt. A war with Iran would eliminate the largest non-USD oil exporter. One thing leads to another. The gold repatriations are a precursor to a currency war and armed conflict. That’s what drives US foreign policy.

Apr 25 10:58

Armenia Heats Up As The Proxy War Continues

Armenia is an important part Russia’s long-term plans. A member of the Eurasian Economic Union Armenia is key to protecting Russia’s southern flank.

So, I was not shocked back in 2016 when the disputed region of Nagorno-Karabakh was activated by the U.S. after a brief visit by then Secretary of State John Kerry as punishment for Russia’s intervention into Syria.

Nagorno-Karabakh had been peaceful for more than twenty years before Kerry’s visit. And within days, fighting broke out on the Azeri side of the region which lies between the two countries.

So, color me not shocked that as the Neoconservatives take control of the Trump White House that they activate a color revolution in Armenia while simultaneously pushing Russia in Ukraine, Syria, the U.K., the financial markets and seemingly everywhere else at the same time.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

The flash points for several potential hot wars are tinder for the kerosine being thrown on them, courtesy of the US and the West.

Apr 25 10:43

Turkey’s Military Offensive in Afrin

In late January, Turkey launched a ground incursion named Operation Olive Branch in the Afrin canton of northern Syria. The offensive is directed against the Kurdish-led Democratic Union Party in Syria (PYD), particularly its armed wing named People’s Protection Units (YPG), which Ankara considers as a terrorist group since 1985 and the Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF) positions surrounding the city of Afrin. Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan stated that the aim of the operation was to give Afrin back to its rightful owners, a statement that has since been used by Kurdish group to claim that he intends to engineer a demographic shift. However, by March, Turkish troops took control of Syria’s Afrin region, deploying “police force” to oversee 115 “strategic forces” and more than 80 villages under its control, the state-run Anadolu news agency reported.

Apr 25 08:42

Turkey has ‘responsibility’ to share Armenian pain over 1915: Erdo?an

Turkey has a responsibility to share the pain of Armenian citizens over the “1915 events,” according to a statement signed by President Recep Tayyip Erdo?an and read at an Armenian memorial held in Istanbul on April 24.

“It is Turkey’s conscientious and ethical responsibility to share the historical pain of our Armenian citizens,” read the statement at the Istanbul Armenian Church on the 103rd anniversary of the mass killing of Ottoman Armenians during World War I.

“We will continue to share your pain and try to resolve your problems in the future,” added the statement, which was read out both in Armenian and Turkish.

Extending his condolences to the Armenian community, Erdo?an also expressed “condolences to the Turkish nation over loss of lives of millions of Ottoman citizens due to wars, migrations, conflicts and diseases during the same period.”

Apr 25 08:34

Armenian-Americans flood the streets of Los Angeles as they call on government to formally recognize 1915 genocide by the Ottoman Empire that took the lives of 1.5MILLION

Thousands of Armenian-Americans took to the streets of Los Angeles on Tuesday to commemorate the deaths of an estimated 1.5 million Armenians under the Ottoman Empire a century ago.

The demonstrations came hours after Armenian Prime Minister Serzh Sargsyan resigned following 10 days of large anti-government protests in that country.

Marchers in Los Angeles demanded that the 1.5million deaths starting in 1915 be recognized by Turkey as genocide.

Although Armenians and many historians consider it to be genocide, Turkey - successor of the Ottoman Empire - contends those who died were victims of civil war and unrest.

Los Angeles demonstrators waved Armenian and American flags and carried signs that read '1915 never again' and 'Turkish denial must end.'

Apr 25 08:18

Erdogan Pays Tribute to Armenian Victims on Genocide Remembrance Day

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan paid tribute Tuesday to the Armenians who died in the Ottoman Empire during World War I on the occasion of the international Armenian Genocide Remembrance Day.

"Once again, I remember with respect the Ottoman Armenians who lost their lives, and offer my sincere condolences to their children and descendants. On this occasion, I also pray for God’s grace and mercy on millions of Ottoman citizens we lost due to contagious diseases, migration, war and clashes during the same period," Erdogan said in a message to the religious ceremony held in the Armenian Patriarchate, obtained by Sputnik.

Apr 25 07:42

Hybrid War In Reverse: Why The SDF Can’t Hold The Euphrates

This hybrid war, with multiple and difficult to distinguish sides against the Syrian state, is practically over and isolated now only to Idlib and part of Dara province with no perspective for the future. NATO’s humiliation with its failed cruise missiles strikes proved that NATO’s humiliation with its failed cruise missiles strikes proved that NATO is incapable to win any war without full air supremacy.

So what is left? The only option is prolonging the war, forcing Damascus to liberate all the territory at a cost and not in a quick manner. The meeting between Putin, Rohani and Erdogan was established to put together a statement that they are against any US zone in Syria. But what does that mean in perspective, how will they crush US zone of influence?

The US established the SDF forces in the period of the war which was its last hope for a footprint in Syria.>>>

Apr 25 05:12

EU to mobilize €3 bln for Syrians in Turkey in coming two years

The European Union will mobilize additional €3 bln for Syrians in Turkey in the coming two years, High Representative of the European Union for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy Federica Mogherini said at a UN-EU donor conference in Brussels on Wednesday. "For Syrians in Turkey, the European Union and member states will uphold their commitments and mobilize additional €3 bln in the coming two years," she said. According to Mogherini, the EU has so far devoted almost €11 bln to the Syrian people, both inside Syria and in the region. She added that the EU had "a very strict way of delivering aid that reaches the people." A two-day international donor conference on Syria, which opened in Brussels on April 24, involves representatives of more than 85 countries and organizations.

Apr 24 14:09

Venezuela Is Replenishing Its Gold!

Venezuela and Turkey have repatriated all their gold stored in the US – Venezuela now sells it. Venezuela, Germany, Austria and the Netherlands are some of the 11 countries that have repatriated a significant portion of their gold reserves held in the US and other countries in recent years. Turkey has recently announced that it has decided to repatriate all the gold it stores to the Federal Reserve (FED). According to the latest IMF data, Turkey’s gold reserves are estimated at 591 tons, worth just over $23 billion. Turkey ranks 11th among the biggest stocks, behind the Netherlands and ahead of India. However, what should be troubled by Turkey is what happened and continues in another country that has decided to repatriate all of its reserves to gold and which has been and continues to be openly against the US. Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez said he did it for the citizens of his country, but he died a little later, and there was no way to appreciate his real intentions.

Apr 24 13:37

Turkey withdraws its gold from USA

The administration of the Central Bank of Turkey has withdrawn the national gold reserve from the US Federal Reserve System. According to Trend news agency, the Central Bank of Turkey had 220 tons of gold at the US Federal Reserve. At the same time, two other Turkish banks - Ziraat and Vakifbank - also started withdrawing their gold reserves from the United States. Their "gold assets" are evaluated at 95 tons. As of March 2018, the gold reserves of the Central Bank of Turkey amounted to $25.3 billion. Analysts believe that Turkey has made such a move against the background of worsening relations between Ankara and Washington. Earlier, Want China Times wrote with reference to Duowei News that China's enormous gold reserves give the People's Republic of China an opportunity to cause the US national currency to collapse. The publications also noted that Russia had doubled her gold and currency reserves since 2005.

Apr 24 10:15

The Great Game Comes To Syria

An unusual triple alliance is emerging from the Syrian war, one that could alter the balance of power in the Middle East, unhinge the NATO alliance, and complicate the Trump administration’s designs on Iran. It might also lead to yet another double cross of one of the region’s largest ethnic groups, the Kurds.

However, the “troika alliance” - Turkey, Russia and Iran - consists of three countries that don’t much like one another, have different goals, and whose policies are driven by a combination of geo-global goals and internal politics.

Apr 23 10:49

US supplies weapons to Kurdish militants free of charge: Erdogan

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan says the US and its allies have been providing free weapons to Kurdish militants operating in northern Syria in a move that poses a threat to Turkey's security.

In an interview with the Turkish NTV news channel on Saturday, Erdogan accused the US and its allies of refusing to sell weapons to Ankara while arming the outlawed Kurdish forces.

“We cannot buy weapons from the US with our money, but unfortunately, the US and coalition forces give these weapons, this ammunition, to terrorist organizations for free,” he said. “So where does the threat come from? It comes primarily from strategic partners.”

The Turkish president also noted that Washington continues to dispatch arms convoys to Syria. "The US sent 5,000 trucks loaded with weapons to northern Syria," he said.

Apr 21 09:41

Turkish Op in Syria: US Promises to Retaliate Against Any Attack on Manbij – SDF

A Syrian Democratic Forces commander has told Sputnik that residents of the city of Manbij in northeastern Syria are on heightened alert due to the planned Turkish military operation in the area but that the current situation in the city is stable.

"Not long ago, we discussed the issue related to Turkey's possible attack on Manbij with the US military which promised to retaliate against any assault on the city, regardless of who would launch this attack," Ebu Adil, commander of the Manbij Military Council within the Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF), stressed.

He said that the US-led coalition has been stationed in the city since it was liberated from Daesh* militants two years ago.

Apr 21 09:34

Spiegel: Erdogan’s Panic Movement Is Triggering Early Elections In Turkey

As an indication of Erdogan’s weakness and not power, he comments on the announcement of early elections in Turkey, the magazine Spiegel said in its paper version!

In his remarks he notes that Turkish President Tayyip Erdogan has been in power for 15 years and while he is presenting himself daily in the media, he is still surprised by his compatriots, for example by announcing early elections. However, the magazine notes: “Erdogan’s decision to call for elections and not wait until the fall of 2019 is a sign of weakness and not of strength. The President invites citizens to the polls not to extend his powers but to prevent a greater erosion of his powers. The AKP and the MHP may call for a referendum in April 2017 aimed at introducing a presidential system that will give Erdogan even more power, but since then the situation has worsened.”

Apr 20 16:06

Turkey Will Repatriate All Gold From The US In Attempt To Ditch The Dollar

Turkey announced it will repatriate all the gold it has stored at the US Federal Reserve and deliver it to the Istanbul Stock Exchange, in an attempt to eliminate the influence of the dollar.

Apr 20 11:58

Turkey withdrew all its gold - 220 tons - from the United States

CENTRAL BANK OF TURKEY withdrew from the depot of the US Federal Reserve System all the gold of its country.

It said it had 28,689 tons of gold at the end of 2016, and that the withdrawal was completed by the end of last year.

The influential Turkish newspaper Milliyet announced that its largest gold bank from Turkey was also withdrawn from the United States and that they did so at the invitation of the head of the State of Recep Tayyip Erdogan.

He said that the head of state urged the withdrawal of this move in order for Turkey "to free up currency exchange pressures and use gold in the national interest".

Turkish bank Halk Bankas? returned 29 tons of gold to the country.

According to unverified data, Ankara has withdrawn 220 tons of gold from abroad - mainly from the United States.

Apr 19 14:48

Turkey ‘may face sanctions’ for buying Russian S-400 missiles and not toeing US line – diplomat

Ankara’s decision to buy S-400 air defense systems from Russia exposes Turkey to possible US sanctions and may bar it from getting F-35 jets, a State Department official said, adding that Turkey should “align with the West.”

The warning came on Wednesday from Assistant Secretary of State Wess Mitchell, who spoke to the House Foreign Affairs Committee on behalf of his department’s Bureau of European and Eurasian Affairs.

Apr 19 09:14

Is Trump’s Broader War against Syria on Hold? A Member State of NATO is “Sleeping with the Enemy”: America is at War with both Syria and Turkey

The US war cabinet chose to implement a face saving punitive bombing rather than an all out war against Syria. Defense Secretary Mattis was acutely aware that a punitive bombing could lead to escalation and military confrontation with Russia.

Russia’s objective was to avoid a military clash while ensuring the defense of Syria. The Russians were crystal clear. They would counterattack if Russian military assets were targeted.

Washington also knew that they could not initiate at this juncture a major military campaign against Syria largely due to divisions within the Atlantic Alliance and the fact that a NATO member State, namely Turkey had become an ally of Russia and was fighting US proxy Kurdish rebel forces (integrated by French, British and US Special Forces) in Northern Syria.

What Washington decided upon was a punitive attack while putting a major theater war against Syria “on hold”.

Apr 18 12:42

Conflict Looming Between Greece And Turkey Over The Oil-Rich Imia Islets?

Yesterday the Turkish Foreign Ministry: “the rocks of Imia, their territorial waters and the airspace are exclusively under the Turkish sovereignty”... An honest answer to Ankara is given by Athens regarding Imia and the provocative announcement by the Turkish Foreign Ministry. The Greek Ministry of Foreign Affairs accuses Turkey of challenging European law and makes it clear that Greek sovereignty over Imia is clear and indisputable. It also calls on Ankara to stop perversion and to reunite. “While the European Union calls on Turkey to respect European law, she answers with a provocative circumvention announcement. It repeats a flagrantly illegal position, ignoring the fact that the legal status of the Aegean is fully guaranteed by international law. The Greek sovereignty over Imia is clear and indisputable in accordance with the Lausanne Treaty of 1923, the 1930 Italian-Turkish Agreements and the 1947 Treaty of Paris.

Apr 18 12:36

European Parliament To Turkey: Release The Two Greek Soldiers You Have Held Captive

The European Parliament calls on Ankara to release Aggelos Mitretoides and Dimitris Kouklitzis, who have been imprisoned since early March in the highest security prisons in Andrianoupolis without being charged. According to a draft resolution published by Euractiv, “the European Parliament urges the Turkish authorities to complete the judicial process soon and release the two Greek prisoners and return them to Greece”.

Apr 18 12:12

Turkish Army Starts Fresh Operation against Kurdish Fighters in Northern Syria

The Turkish Army troops and Ankara-backed militants have started an assault on the outskirts of the occupied town of Afrin in Northwestern Aleppo to hunt the Kurdish fighters that are carrying out sporadic attacks against them, militant-affiliated websites reported on Wednesday. The news websites reported that the Turkish soldiers and their allied militants have kicked off a fresh round of operation against the Kurds in a mountainous region, including Mound Hassan Dayereh, between Bolbol and Rajou region North of Afrin. The websites further said that the Turkish troops' operation is aimed at putting an end to the Kurdish fighters' sporadic attacks on the Ankara forces, adding that tens of Kurdish militias are still operating in the region. They went on to say that the Kurdish fighters have been launching surprise attacks on the Ankara-backed Free Syrian Army in Afrin region, and inflicted tens of casualties on the militants so far.

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