Turkey’s military achievements 'potentially hazardous for our region’, warns expert

11:17 • 29.01.18



The Turkish authorities’ rhetoric, coupled with the strong international reaction to their military operations in Afrin, prompt hazards of more radical actions by that country in future, according to an Armenian expert in Arab studies.

 

Speaking to Tert.am, Armen Petrosyan warned of the possible regional impact, which he said may deal a heavy blow also on the Nagorno-Karabakh (Artsakh) Republic

 

“Turkey will meet all its targets,” he said, highlighting the country’s success in the anti-Kurdish independence campaign in the north of Turkey and efforts towards creating a security zone in north-western Syria (to later make it their own zone of influence).

 

The expert also agreed that the country has been somewhat passive in both diplomacy and the military domain after the 2016 failed coup.

“In the context of thоse operations, focusing on the anti-Kurdish campaign as a key target, the foreign policy was revised to kind of re-edit the relationship with countries, which was competitive so to speak. Also in that context, we eye-witnessed Turkey's more active role-playing in a different conflicts in the neighboring [states],” Petrosyan added.


He noted that the situation turned a different turn in 2016 amid the policy changes between Russia and Iran, with Turkey gaining the privilege to launch the “Euphrates Shield” military operation in Syria.

 

“Turkey, in a way, gained freedom in terms of playing a more active role to resolve important security-related issues that were complicated until 2016,” he said, predicting higher chances for the country to expand its power and influence in the wake of the failed Kurdish independence referendum.

 

According to the expert, the fact is perfectly understood and accepted by all the countries involved in the processes in the Middle East. “Considering Turkey’s current pretensions, and the unpredictable and highly ambitious nature of that country’s leadership, there will be rather serious problems for the other role-players. I think both Iran and Russia are considering considering those scenarios. So they will definitely draw certain ‘red lines’ for Turkey in the frameworks of both the operations in Afrin, and in general.”

 

The expert said he expects the process to have its influence also on Armenia.

 

“In the short run, it is probably advantageous to see Turkey plunge into very different problems, but this situation is temporary. On the other hand, it strengthens Turkey’s influence, giving it more self-confidence,” he added.

 

“Turkey’s increased influence on Syria and Iraq will run parallel with problems dealing with our communities in those countries.  In terms of our region, Turkey’s success is encouraging for Azerbaijan, their 'brother' so to speak. We notice a certain enthusiasm there over the operations in Afrin. It might be an artificially developed agenda in the Azerbaijani media to mitigate the [public] sentiments towards that country’s government (which supports Turkey’s military actions in another country). Anyway, Turkey’s possible anti-terrorist operations in Artsakh [Nagorno-Karabakh] is also something which is notably being much spoken about. Also, Azerbaijan is kind of encouraged to follow Turkey’s example to later launch similar military operations in Artsakh. All this testifies to the fact that Turkey’s achievements will have their direct impact on our region in terms of that country’s increasing influence. And that’s a serious potential hazard,” Petrosyan added.

Hripsime Hovhannisyan





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