Gideon Rachman talks to academic and writer Sinan Ulgen about Turkey’s foreign policy under President Recep Tayyip Erdogan, focusing on the controversial decision to turn Istanbul’s Hagia Sophia museum back into a mosque and the rationale behind Turkish military interventions in Syria and Libya.
The emergence of new actors in the Mediterranean region has resulted in new economic, military, and ideological power struggles. Amidst this perilous and volatile backdrop, the European Union should strategically assess political trends and evaluate the costs of inaction.
EU leaders must either decide to act jointly as the European Union or leave Libya’s future in the hands of Russia and Turkey—with dangerous consequences for NATO and for Europe’s security.
With the UAE emerging as the clear winner in the Gulf race to develop civilian nuclear power, regional tensions, especially with Saudi Arabia, have been exacerbated.
Faced with no shortage of domestic challenges, Erdogan is expanding Turkey’s role in the Eastern Mediterranean—and antagonizing Europe in turn.
For a European Union with geopolitical ambitions, revamping its Iran policy into a regional Gulf strategy would be a good place to start.
The rift between Europe and the United States over Iran is deepening. To regain leverage, the Europeans should engage all eight Gulf states in talks about regional security and nonproliferation.
The EU must seize on the strategic opportunity presented by the coronavirus pandemic to take the initiative away from Russia and Turkey in Libya.
As the United States puts pressure on Europe to cut down on its trade ties with Iran, Tehran has already set its sights eastward. To remain a player, the Europeans have to step up their game.
The EU is a global actor, particularly in the areas of trade, sanctions, and assistance, but its neighboring regions remain the main focus of its external policy.