One in Ankara and the other in Istanbul Erdogan’s throne is in danger

Turkey has been living for years in the light of internal and external tensions questyear have increased significantly and posed a great challenge to President Recep Tayyip Erdogan and his “Justice and Development” party, which he leads, especially with the announcement of 6 parties opposed to him to form an electoral alliance that could overthrow him in the elections presidential and parliamentary elections to be held in June of the year 2023.

The mayors of Ankara and Istanbul advance

Furthermore, the latest opinion polls show that Ankara mayor Mansur Yavas, who belongs to the Republican People’s Party, which is the main opposition party in Turkey, and Ekrem Imamoglu, who is also affiliated with the main opposition party, overtook Erdogan in the latest opinion poll conducted by the research firm “Metropol”, which showed the decline in popularity of the ruling Justice and Development Party yet another time in front of Yavas and Imamoglu, who are considered among the most important candidates expected in the next presidential elections.

Two field researchers from Turkish research firms “Metropol” and “Eurasia” stated that “the popularity of the ruling party continues to decline due to the current economic crisis and the currency problem, which has recorded high levels of record this month, in addition to the spread of unemployment and the decline in the standard of living of the middle classes ”. They are all a set of internal problems that threaten the survival of the Turkish president and his ruling party, researchers in Al Arabiya

Istanbul Mayor Ekrem Imamoglu
Istanbul Mayor Ekrem Imamoglu

The challenges of President Erdogan questyears are not limited to Turkish interiors alone, but he and his country are facing unprecedented tensions with neighboring countries, in particularly Greece and Cyprus, members of the European Union, in addition to its continuing differences with the United States, Russia and some Arab countries.

impossible balance

In this context, Ilhan Ozgl, former professor of international relations at the University of Ankara, confirmed that “the Erdogan government has been trying for some time to develop its relations with both the United States and Russia, but there is little balance in relations with these two countries. Turkish rapprochement with Moscow angers Washington. Furthermore, Turkish support for Ukraine worries Moscow, and therefore this process is very complicated. “

In an interview with Al, the international relations expert indicated that “Ankara is also trying to restore its strained relations with Arab countries, including the Gulf capitals, as well as with Israel, but these countries are in no hurry to end tensions with the Turkey, and for now it is clear. Ankara really needs to break its isolation by renewing its relations with these countries “.

Ankara Mayor Mansur Yavas
Ankara Mayor Mansur Yavas

He further added: “There are many external challenges for the Turkish president, besides America, Russia and the Arab countries, his country does not have a good relationship with the European Union, even though Ankara has made progress with Brussels on the refugee issue, but the problem is that Turkey keeps refugees on its territory in exchange some money from the European Union.

The European Union is not interested

He also stressed that “the European Union is not interested in strengthening its relations with Ankara and focuses only on issues related to the issue of migrants, and with the coming to power of an anti-Erdogan coalition. in Germany, Ankara’s challenges in dealing with European countries will increase ».

Özgül also felt that “Ankara’s tasks in the new year seem difficult, as it needs to find solutions to its complex internal problems, in in particular those linked to the economy and the currency crisis, in addition to its external problems which require us to underline that it is a key partner of NATO, the United States and the European Union “.

Biden and Erdogan
Biden and Erdogan

Tensions with Washington

Interestingly, Ankara’s relations with Washington have been strained repeatedly in recent years, but Turkish-American tensions reached their peak last April with US President Joe Biden’s acknowledgment of the Armenian genocide. Prior to that, Washington had opposed Ankara’s purchase of the Russian-made S-400 air defense system.

The continued support of the United States for the Syrian Democratic Forces, known by their acronym “QSD”, of which the “Kurdish People’s Protection Units” are the most important components, threatens to further in tensions in relations between Washington and Ankara, especially since questlast was asking the United States for years to stop supporting Kurdish fighters, which Ankara classifies as the units to which they belong as a “terrorist” group.

And Moscow too!

In addition to the tensions in course with Washington, Ankara’s relations with Moscow also do not seem stable, especially with Turkey’s support for Ukraine and Kiev’s acquisition of Turkish drones, which angers the Russian side after Turkish expansion in the South Caucasus through its alliance with Azerbaijan and its relentless attempts to normalize its relations with Armenia.

Putin and Erdogan in Moscow (archive - AFP)
Putin and Erdogan in Moscow (archive – AFP)

In addition to these challenges, Turkey has some issues in suspended with European institutions on human rights dossier: Council of Europe will punish Ankara after less than a month, suspending its membership or preventing it from voting if it refuses to release Osman Kavala, a businessman known for his activities for charity, Osman. Kavala was jailed for more than 4 years after the council, which includes 47 countries including Turkey, at the conclusion of its regular meeting held earlier this month, gave Ankara 6 weeks to implement a ruling. in precedence by the “European Court of Human Rights” which ordered the immediate release of Kavala. .

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