Europe, US join hands to address Erdogan’s aggressive strategy in Middle East
On Monday, French President Emmanuel Macron, received US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo for a discreet meeting described as a “courtesy” visit. The two met to discuss various issues including aggressive Turkish foreign policy, threats to global security, efforts to counter violent extremism, Iran’s “destabilizing” behavior and “malign influence” of Hezbollah in Lebanon.
Pompeo during his recent interview with French daily newspaper Le Figaro, said, “France’s president Emmanuel Macron and I agree that Turkey’s recent actions have been very aggressive … Europe and the US must work together to convince Erdogan such actions are not in the interest of his people.”
Of all Turkey has been a issue of worry especially for European leaders. Middle East region has been victim to Turkey’s expansive and intrusive policies, ranging from Mediterranean oil exploration, militarisation of Libya, sponsoring ISIS, funding militias in Syria to backing Azerbaijan in Nagorno-Karabakh conflict with Armenia.
Pompeo slammed Turkey for its increasingly offensive foreign policy and expressed concern over its increasing military capability, though he did not mention if Ankara would continue to be part of the North Atlantic Alliance or not. Last month, Macron accused Turkish President of following a “bellicose” approach towards NATO. He further added that tensions in the region could be resolved if “Turkish president respects France, respects the European Union, respects its values, does not tell lies and does not utter insults”.
Of late Macron had been struggling with calming down situation with Muslims nations as things got tense after heated rhetoric following the assassination of French teacher, Samuel Paty, who showed his students caricatures of the prophet Muhammad alongside other cartoons to discuss the concept of free speech.