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.