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 Monday, June 14 2021 18:53
David Stepanyan

Academician: Erdogan is ready to offer the South Caucasus to Biden

Academician: Erdogan is ready to offer the South Caucasus to Biden

ArmInfo. Beyond doubt, Ankara has high hopes for the forthcoming meeting of the Presidents of the United States and Turkey. Director of the Institute of Oriental  Studies of the National Academy of Sciences of Armenia, academician  Ruben Safrastyan, expressed a similar opinion to ArmInfo.

"Given the fact that relations between the two countries are at the  lowest possible level of development, it is important for Turkey to  register progress towards improving these relations at the end of  this meeting. To what extent they succeed depends on resolving many  problems in relations between Washington and Ankara. I think that it  will be quite difficult to do this, although the Turks, especially in  recent months, are making active efforts in this direction," he  stressed.

Today, on June 14, on the sidelines of the NATO summit in Brussels, a  meeting will be held between the presidents of the United States and  Turkey, Joe Biden and Recep Erdogan. According to U.S. Secretary of  State Antony Blinken, during the meeting the disagreements between  Washington and Ankara on Syria, Afghanistan, Karabakh and other  regional issues will be discussed.

In general, according to the academician, the recent visit of the  delegation headed by U.S. Acting Assistant Secretary for European and  Eurasian Affairs Philip Reeker to Armenia, Georgia and Azerbaijan was  another confirmation of Washington's intentions to intensify its own  policy in the South Caucasus. Safrastyan considers the content of the  recent statement of U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken on Artsakh  to be another factor confirming the U.S. intentions to strengthen its  own positions specifically in the direction of the negotiations on  Artsakh.

"And here Turkey has something to offer the United States in the hope  of getting something in a different direction. Namely, the  opportunity to gain a foothold in the South Caucasus after last  year's war. Thus, with regard to the South Caucasus, Washington and  Ankara will mutually seek to benefit from cooperation. At the same  time, the United States seeks to intensify the OSCE Minsk Group, not  allowing Turkey to participate in its work. The latter is considered  as one of the factors, tying the hands of Russia in the region," he  said.

In general, the Turkologist notes significant transformations in the  American-Turkish relations. This is due to changes in the value  system of Turkey from the western values of Ataturk to the Muslim  ones of Erdogan. The latter, in his opinion, helps to reduce the role  of Turkey in the eyes of the American political elite, especially in  the light of the intentions already voiced by President Biden to  defend and actively promote democratic values in the world.

In this light, the U.S. political elite, in the academician's view,  does not trust Turkey, ruled by Erdogan, who does not share Western  values. And the latter's adventurous policy is more and more  conducive to the growth of this mistrust. At the same time, he  stressed that the Americans, one way or another, are forced to reckon  with the Middle East realities and the role of Turkey in shaping  these realities. The latter, in his opinion, forces Washington to  close its eyes to the consistent Islamization of this country.

"And, nevertheless, for President Biden, Turkey is important,  primarily in the context of U.S. relations with Russia. And given  their current aggravation, Turkey is viewed by the United States as a  NATO ally that significantly limits Russian influence. Globally, due  to China , the shift of the central vector of American foreign policy  even further to the East to the Pacific basin means a decrease in the  importance of the Middle East and, as a consequence, in the  importance of Turkey for the United States. And we see that this  factor, for example, has already allowed Biden, unlike his  predecessors, to recognize the fact of the Armenian genocide, "  summed up Safrastyan. 

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