Turkish political scientist explains why Erdogan threatens Greece

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan is trying to divert attention from internal problems in his country with threats towards Greece. On September 8, Turkish political scientist Kerim Has expressed this opinion to Izvestia.
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On September 6, Erdogan threatened Greece with a response in case of a provocation in the Aegean Sea.

“Now Turkey has two internal issues: the economic crisis (inflation, unemployment) and the problem of refugees. Erdogan was unable to launch a military operation in Syria, so the turn went in the direction of the traditional enemy, with whom an artificial confrontation is being created. For Turkey, Greece is a very convenient adversary – a kind of “seasonal enemy” with which you can enter into a controlled conflict,” Has said.

At the same time, the political scientist noted that this conflict also plays into the hands of Greece.

“On the one hand, the reaction of the Greek leadership raises the rating of [Greek Prime Minister Kyriakos] Mitsotakis, on the other hand, the conflict allows us to count on an increase in support for the United States, which has been increasing its presence in the region in recent years,” he said.

However, according to Has, Greece will not go to war with Turkey. NATO will also not allow this conflict to go into a hot phase.

“Both countries are members of NATO, and such a war would undermine the North Atlantic alliance itself. Therefore, everyone understands that there will be no war, ”the expert concluded.

Erdogan said on September 3 that Greece would pay a “heavy price” if it continued to worsen relations with Turkey. He warned against using the S-300 complex against Turkish aircraft.

Two days later, Greek Foreign Minister Nikos Dendias, in letters to the head of European diplomacy Josep Borrell and NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg, announced the threat of a serious conflict with Turkey. Dendias drew attention to “the latest series of inflammatory statements” made by Erdogan.

On August 30, the Turkish leader said that Greece had challenged NATO by using C-300s in pursuit of Turkish aircraft. The Turkish leader recalled that Greece is neither a political nor an economic ally of Turkey.

A few days earlier, on August 23, it became known that the Greek Air Force was trying to intercept Turkish fighters that were performing tasks as part of the NATO mission in the Eastern Mediterranean. Despite the interception, the Turkish Air Force aircraft completed their tasks and returned to the air bases. Greece denied Turkey’s claims about the use of the S-300.

Erdogan said in July that he had no plans to start a war with Greece, but that Athens was violating Turkish airspace. According to him, this happened 147 times a year.

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