Erdogan escalates issues against Greece as he mobilizes Imams in his re-election bid

Nicosia [Cyprus]- Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan, that has led Turkey for the past twenty years, announced during a speech in Izmir on June 9 that he will look for re-election in following year’s elections.
As Turkey is facing a severe economic crisis, Erdogan, seeing his popularity falling rapidly in repeated opinion polls, is trying to win ballots by rising his rhetoric against Greece and also by mobilizing the big network of imams to persuade Turkish migrants to choose him.

Speaking after viewing army exercises in Izmir, on the same day he validated that he will run in the June 2023 elections, Erdogan boosted stress with Turkey’s neighbour Greece, cautioning Athens to quit arming Aegean islands that do not have a military standing.

In Turkey’s sight, the Aegean islands were offered to Greece under the 1923 Lausanne Treaty and the 1947 Paris Treaty on the condition that they would certainly not be armed. Ankara implicates Greece of having military units as well as weapons systems primarily on the Dodecanese islands in East Aegean.

” I advise Greece to avoid desires, acts and also statements that will certainly lead to regret. Involve your senses,” Erdogan said as well as included that Turkey will not renounce its legal rights in the Aegean and also will certainly not pull back from making use of civil liberties that are established by international agreements when it concerns arming islands.”

Erdogan’s union companion and also leader of the ultra-nationalist MHP Event Devlet Bahceli also charged Greece of intensifying tensions and claimed that the Greeks are playing with fire.

” The question of the Dodecanese islands, which is the extension of Anatolia, is a wound that has actually not yet shut,” stated Bahceli as well as ominously included: “The taken things have to be returned to the owner, whether voluntarily or by force.”

Additionally, Bahceli declared that the 9 military bases that the US has actually established in Greece are a danger to Turkey’s nationwide identity. “Greece’s ask for F-15 as well as F-16 aircraft from the US is not an invite to peace, yet to polarization,” he said.

The feedback of the Greek Government is that Turkey intentionally misunderstands the treaties relating to armed forces on these Greek islands as well as urges that it has legal grounds to protect itself despite Ankara’s hostile actions.

Ankara has actually recently launched a battery of offenses of Greek airspace. Greek aircraft constantly recognize as well as obstruct the Turkish boxer jets.

It is kept in mind that in the summer season of 2020, the continuous dispute in between Athens and also Ankara over significant gas deposits in the eastern Mediterranean almost brought about an armed forces problem after Turkish research ships had been crossing Greek waters for lots of days.

Erdogan in the past few weeks has kept lashing out at Greece, trying to “put it in its area”, threatening it with severe effects. He does this since, on the one hand, he sees Athens as a soft as well as simple target, and also, on the various other, he raises tensions with NATO ally Greece as an utilize on the United States concerning his plans to invade north Syria and to obtain acknowledgment of his needs on the power resources of Eastern Mediterranean.

The Turkish President as well as his ultra-nationalist ally Bahceli have seen their appeal falling in opinion polls and are afraid a voter reaction, as Turkey’s rising cost of living maintains soaring at 73 per cent, while energy and food rates are reaching extraordinary elevations, unemployment maintains increasing and the value of the Turkish Lira is decreasing quickly.

That is why on March 31, the Turkish Parliament, where Erdogan’s AKP and Bahceli MHP presently regulate the bulk, elected to decrease the election threshold from 10 to 7 percent, because surveys showed that MHP will certainly continue to be under the 10 needed per cent threshold in a feasible election.

Erdogan is likewise substantially concerned regarding the decreasing appeal of his own celebration AKP, since the current opinion polls show that the assistance it appreciates has actually fallen to 27.7 percent, from the 42.6 per cent it racked up in the 2018 elections. So, Erdogan needs each and every single ballot he can reach narrow the void with the opposition celebrations.

As in the 2018 governmental political election, Erdogan won nearly 60 per cent of the ex-pat votes, he is fairly mindful that the ballots of the Turkish diaspora have ended up being exceptionally important and also to this end makes use of government-appointed imams to interact messages to citizens in mosques.

To achieve this, the Head of state of Turkey counts on the Diyanet (the Religious Matters Directorate) which is run by Ali Erbas, somebody he personally picked, to circulate political Islam and AKP’s positions and ideology.

In less than a decade, Diyanet’s budget plan quadrupled to $ 1 billion, as well as it employs over 120,000 individuals, making it among Turkey’s largest state institutions – larger than the Ministry of Interior. Diyanet has actually come to be a gigantic federal government bureaucracy for the promo of Sunni Islam.

Diyanet supplies Qur’ a training courses, particularly summer courses for children, issues fatwas as needed, but also talk about political events as well as has substantial economic interests. Some individuals call it the “Diyanet holding”.

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