Monday, July 22 2019 12:08
David Stepanyan

Academician: Europe`s soft line towards Turkey is explained by the  problem of refugees

Academician: Europe`s soft line towards Turkey is explained by the  problem of refugees

ArmInfo.The soft line of Europe towards Turkey is explained by the presence in Turkey's territory of 3.5 million refugees from the countries of the Middle East. Brussels  also pays Ankara millions of euros for the maintenance of these  people, Ruben Safrastyan, Director of the Institute of Oriental  Studies, National Academy of Sciences of Armenia, expressed such an  opinion to ArmInfo. 

"It is the refugees who are the significant, geopolitical, decisive  factor in Brussels' relations with Ankara. In this light, the EU  refrains from using the entire sanctions arsenal at its disposal  against Turkey. Moreover, the Europeans are negotiating with the  country that occupies the third of Cyprus, the EU member state. A  country that has deployed a 40,000 army in the EU territory. This is  an unprecedentedly soft approach, "he stressed.

Moreover, according to Safrastyan, many European countries still  consider Turkey as a future member of the European Union. It also  prevents Brussels from open pressure on Ankara. Nevertheless,  according to him, the European Union gradually, but consistently,  tightens its position on Ankara.  According to the estimates of the  turkologist, at this stage, Europe has already begun to show greater  determination towards Ankara, which may result in a sanctions regime.  Such changes, in his opinion, are due to Turkey's desire to extract  economic benefits from the occupied territories of the EU.  Safrastyan, in particular, believes that this fact is viewed by  Brussels as pasing all bounds.  On July 16, the EU Council, in  response to the drilling that Turkey is conducting in the waters of  Cyprus, imposed the first sanctions. The high-level dialogue was  suspended, the meeting of the Turkey-EU Association Council was  canceled, and assistance for 2020 was reduced. Brussels also urged  the European Investment Bank to reconsider decisions on loans to  Turkey and instructed to continue work on the options for sanctions.   The Foreign Ministry of Turkey responded to this decision with a  statement of intent to resolutely continue work on drilling in the  eastern part of the Mediterranean Sea. In the exclusive economic zone  of Cyprus, where gas fields are found, there are two Turkish drilling  rigs - "Fatih" and "Yavuz". Greece and Cyprus consider this a  provocation. In fact, Turkey's actions directly hit the EU's energy   security.

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