tv Kulturzeit Deutsche Welle September 5, 2020 12:30am-1:01am CEST
plato his 1st slate is for the beethoven 202250th anniversary here. a geo political storm is brewing in the eastern mediterranean and strangely enough its 2 nato allies that are stoking the tensions greece and turkey have sent warships to an area southwest of cyprus in an effort to reinforce their claims to oil and gas resources in the area fred says dispatched its own naval vessel in support of greece with turkey already at odds with france and other middle eastern powers over libya could everyone's military adventurism spark a wider escalation our title today turkey versus greece is anyone willing to risk
for. the moment. hello and welcome to to the point and here are our guests. is an expert on turkish foreign policy and a fellow at the robert bosch academy and berlin and he says in this conflict greece is using the language of international law and european solidarity and turkey's using language of fair sharing of mediterranean resources and coercive diplomacy it's also a pleasure to welcome to me our he works for daughter bella and he is convinced that unlike turkey's adventurous regional ambitions in recent years its foreign policy regarding the eastern mediterranean is following its traditional line and we're also very glad to have with us yes i'm an aggie and she is a freelance journalist from hamburg who works mainly with the a r
d network she says everyone's hardline approach in the eastern mediterranean is part of his symbolic politics with which he tries to distract from domestic problems in the current conflict he's taking this strategy too far so let me. start out with you char and get your take on how come all stumble this situation really is in mid august greek and turkish warships actually collided in the eastern mediterranean we're hearing some pretty martial rhetoric and some experts are saying this in fact is the highest level of tension we have seen between these 2 countries since 1974 would you see it that way. the way that you put it as combustible i think is the way a way to use it and turkey in the past when it comes to the. matters regarding the egypt see on the mediterranean. never. had
a 2nd thought about engaging with greece if the use of force is necessary so we've seen as you pointed out in cyprus that everybody thought turkey was bluffing regarding that and we've seen that almost 2 countries at the brink of war in 1996 when there was this almost military escalation between the 2 countries over a small land mass of small islands on the ija sea. right now we're seeing. repeat off that and if we look at the turkish foreign policy regarding the maritime matters over the area. changed its stance over that. and since it doesn't recognize the u.n. called nation on the sea of law which part of it is not this is escalating the situation because of the maritime borders and territorial waters and where do you draw the lines so turkey always said that it's not to war if greece goes beyond the
blind because basically what greece is claiming by extending its territorial waters is to kind of corner to argue over a point and turkey just is not willing to accept. is willing to use of force if necessary i don't see a war like a battle maybe so yes i mean we're hearing this is part of a long standing pattern is what charice telling us would you say it's more explosive than past incidents in that pattern. in relation to greece it is explosive then his. policy and his for topics has been and is the more explosive when we look at the big picture of turkey's foreign policy. dangerous it's unprecedented because he's risking to nato allies going to walk the sea really mean that i'm not sure i don't think turkey actually
wants wall i think turkey knows very well that international mediation will step in tokyo knows that the e.u. will make efforts that germany will make affects the u.s. even though they have their own issues at the moment will also not want this conflict so i think is using his aggressive rhetoric because it always helps him domestically but that at the same time he is relying on international diplomacy as we can see in. his using aggressive rhetoric says foreign minister has expressed at the same time that turkey is ready fun to go she ations. so let me come back. to what you said in your opening statement about the language of international law and fair sharing of mediterranea resources as we heard there from chart of both
sides citing international maritime law law of the sea and so on turkey says greece is manipulating international law to him turkey right to oil and gas resources in the mediterranean to a very small corner of the gulf of tell you. but is that even possible isn't international law clear on this point it's not clear like on the one hand yes it is clear but the international law is also like open till interpretation and different interpretations or in this regard the language that is both sides are using still its reference from the international but with different reference one friends they can have turkey argues that it is the it is the main that not the island that got the territorial water that can have the economy exposed. i mean yes we can the international no authorization obvious zone being in the area of course where a country could then explore exactly exactly so given the fact that the greece has
like a very large number of islands in mediterranean i mean i think it's as high as 1000 island so if everyone claims the exclusive economy zones that effectively means that turkey is very much you know confined to the gulf and then from the turkish perspective this is a. maritime blockade you know it sounds like you know that you have like a very limited very limited area so in this regard this poses actually the has much more continued from turkey saw it done many many things let's not forget that both the turkish parliament in 1940 that declared that if treat greece is going to increase the maritime water from 6 mile to 12 miles that will be like a cause for war so in this got this policy has more continued it and both of them have like reference point to a different form of legitimacy and here you are right now you see the conflict in you know different claim of legitimacy and different idea of what the share of the
resources should be so tara let me ask you this maritime boundary disputes are hardly a new thing in the eastern mediterranean as you pointed out and in fact generally these disputing claims of cyprus greece and turkey were largely viewed as. a local affair but now suddenly france is getting involved why what's changed. i think it has 2 reasons one. it could be the way i see it the way all of. it within the european union. has been pursing an active foreign policy in the middle east recently we've seen what he has been doing in libya and lebanon on and so on and so forth so it's on the one hand some sort of. support greece and on the other hand i think the 2nd point is that to somehow perhaps. you cannot go that far like you are thinking that greece is may be you
know small bites for you we're standing behind greece so you cannot go down for. just a minute to be honest with oil and gas prices way down at the moment investors backing out of fossil fuel resources it seems like a strange time to make so much of a fuss over these resources yeah it is a strange time it's actually one of the pic kuli era tease of this conflict that. no one really talks about that i mean some experts talk about it is that. we are actually at a time in history when fossil when we shouldn't compete over. resources for energy but we should compete and discuss how to step out of them and as you say it's very expensive and probably not profitable we don't know yet
how profitable it will be to actually drill for these gas reserves and is the mediterranean and our point is that when we look at the very complicated we go weld of maritime law. in truth and you just explained that the turkey is point is not so bad he took a situation is not so bad so if. this issue went to for example an independent international institution or a. they like turkey greece wouldn't manage to pull off they are maximum 3 months because yes like this idea that every small little island every small little greek island can declare its own economic zone that probably wouldn't yeah i mean an international court
probably wouldn't agree with that and what. turkey's point here so in reality it's not so necessary for our don to be as aggressive as he is he could also step back and rely on international law which obviously he's not willing to do and he's never really been interested which of course underlines the point you made about symbolic politics well i mean one thing i mean the. energy is the most people topic but these issues not that was the energy it's a different form of sovereignty and it's about the job that is i mean the fact that you have a country like u.a.e. which has no border through to the mediterranean like you know doing drilling weeds with greece. in the case how joe poll does it is a job pull the companies into this problem and that the reason that france is in the game as well too i mean the french and the turkish tension right now multifold
it's in libya it's in the mediterranean it's in north africa it's in syria so now you have recent that we saw it is playing out in aleppo trying to like influence. in. iraq so now once again you see in a sounds like an assertion of the sphere of influence pulled by both actors in this regard the french is not playing as the e.u. members they were a major job vocal player that has its own interest and that's why you know the french and the germans are not seeing eye to eye on quite. a quick follow up question on geopolitics in the past the united states was often seen as a kind of mediator or even guarantor of peace between these 2 nato allies. is the reason that this is flaring up also because of the vacuum left by the fact that the trumpet ministration is no longer willing to act as world police shorted the fact that there is a right not
a veteran that left by the us and has not in-field what anyone and anyone else is like and want to reason that you see kind of this job pull the lever is becoming much more in a sense venturous you see this in the middle east you see it is that is the military and you saw this in libya as well to germany is trying to play the role of the mediation and i think like no. mates on they did was but in the end i think like you know it will be still the us the day that will step in that just like in a push or at least because at this stage a conflict is unlikely but not on think will let me ask let's say this did come to an outright conflict with greece even stand a chance against turkey's extremely powerful military i'm not another that military expert and i don't think it will boil down to a total war between the 2 countries where everybody is more belies so it will if even its collapse into some sort of a conflict i think it will be stopped straight away by the international powers and
the sides will be forced to return to the negotiation table as a result of that so i don't imagine like a full scale course of the 2 countries on there in the circumstances the fact is that turkey's army is the 2nd strongest in nato and it has been put to increasing use of late. you know over 29000 turkish armed forces launched an offensive into neighboring syria but failed to achieve their ultimate objective ousting dictator bashar al assad in favor of a radical muslim government. turkish soldiers have also been involved in libya's internal fighting on the side of the government. that anticipated deals on natural gas deliveries from president. bush have yet to materialize. this may have prompted turkish president to want to refocus his foreign policy efforts on the eastern mediterranean and its potentially fast natural gas reserves. had
once been building up turkey's armed forces don't know who's more ships and jet fighters have been encroaching on the territorial waters of neighboring countries as a recent example the turkish vessel was spotted searching for gas in a disputed area of southwestern cyprus. better one has also used arms deals with russia to turn up the political pressure on nato and he's threatened to let thousands of syrian refugees pass through to europe. what does everyone hope to achieve with his aggressive foreign policy. let me put that question straight away to yes i mean what does the one hope to achieve with the saber rattling not only in the eastern mediterranean but elsewhere as well . elsewhere meaning at home domestically. this. playing as we call it has proven to be very. domestic.
this politics aggressive rhetoric this. demonstration off military power this is an idea we won't back down to anyone we want anyone to tell us what to do. this is. popular with his fellow as with a large parts of the takesh population and his past think ed don's past experiences have proven that even when casualties are happening as an often syria for example where turkish soldiers are dying regularly then so doesn't. change the fact that these kinds of yeah these kinds of initiatives are popular in tokyo because it taps into nationalist sentiments the taps into this idea of being a victim to international powers so i am an add on does need and boost of
popularity because he's in a very difficult position at home we'll come back to that in just a moment but let me ask you this chara you say are the ones been following the traditional course in the eastern mediterranean but what about in syria and in libya is the expansionism something different they are. the main rhetoric that the turkish government and i are doing is using regarding syria and libya is let me focus on syria 1st it was never about an expansionist idea or just reflecting the official discourse of course it was more of a security issue that i could they agree to an extent so in that sons when there is a war happening at your border and if you have like 4000000 refugees in your country that you have to take in the dangerous situation the conflict situation going on over there is naturally affecting turkey. regarding syria so
that the operation could be seen to an extent within that perspective when it comes to libya that's a whole another story both. say that as valuable as bored to earlier. metzer all future of political influence in the region turkey has. been pushing for it slightly in the from the jirga fees. sometimes getting what they want sometimes it's not as successful as the pope's let's talk a little bit about the european role in all of this because as all of you have mentioned europe has tried to mediate to some degree particularly angle americal because germany does now have the european union's rotating presidency how effective has that been and does europe face in some ways conflicting loyalties by virtue of the fact that greece is not only a nato ally but also a member of the e.u.
whereas turkey of course is only a nato ally well. i mean germany tried to do like a service in libya and also in eastern mediterranean as well too i mean germany was a country that intelligent conference on the b.s. well true and unfortunately it hasn't produced much one of the major reason for this that it hasn't produced march because you have european proxy war taking place in the b. as well to between friends and italy's in a sense that you know we used to think was a proxy war in the form of the middle east some powers but that in libya you have like basically france and italy supporting different signs of the telling position is much closer to to the turkish positioned the french position was that going to visit the in line with egypt and the united arab emirates unlikeness in support of the war lot of that in the military and i think the prospect is prospects for some form of success is higher for
a very simple reason we're not talking about the european neighborhood we're talking about europe so a conflict not in european neighborhood a conflict within the euro because right now once again you have like you know treat european countries that has been deeply involved france cyprus and agrees but also like turkey which is that the nature of member but at same time and i mean still officially and you can do that even though it's going nowhere so if the trouble is if germany plays the role of the e.u. member rather than and mediator then you know it will have less influence to bring the sides to table because it will be part of the. trouble so i think in these got a fair a major role is a great service that germany can do party given the fact right now there's a void left by the u.s. and no one is going to step in so very briefly if you would sanctions lot of talk right now about possibly imposing sanctions on turkey or would that work with they be effective and do you think it will happen briefly while i think it put it on
might the to have happen but even if it happens if much change the behavior of draghi if any. is if you will just like you know. basically you know on its. own is constructed you just wait let me ask you this. we just heard from once more about the enormous long running ambivalence that the european union has had about moving forward on any form of of accession membership for turkey how has that pushed turkey into this confrontational stance essentially pushed turkey out of the western orbit and i mean the very shot and yes it has done so for a very long time because i don't know if a past decade probably even longer no one in turkey believes that the european union has any interest and accepting them so they lost interest
and that a long time ago i would say politically but also in the minds of the people let us take a very quick look at the domestic situation in turkey to one. k. pay party have engaged in severe repression at home particularly when confronted with perceived threats. after the failed coup attempt against him in july 26th team president early one had tens of thousands of dissidents arrested and declared terrorists. also detained $170.00 domestic and foreign journalists like denise a german citizen who was imprisoned without charges for an entire year. better won almost seems to untie going to europe and the west deliberately his a.k.p. is considering leaving an international convention for combating violence against women as well as lifting penalties on sexual abuse of underage girls if
a marriage results in july he had to hug you sophia and istanbul converted back to a functioning mosque at one time that was christendom's largest church and for decades and museum. step by step he's been moving away from the secular ideals of modern turkey's founder. is one pushing turkey towards an islamic dictatorship. so yes i mean you told us that these symbolic gestures things like converting the hog hagia sophia mosque are in fact a sign to distract from domestic problems what's the biggest domestic challenge that out of one currently faces the financial crisis obviously that the country has been suffering from for many years that's getting less the turkish lira is at a historic low unemployment is rising food prices are going up and cause as everyone else corona the koran the crisis has made things wow us you say saber
rattling is sometimes quite effective at home and generating support what about curtailing women's rights. are you asking about it's effective and. depends on who you ask. the cons of a tive parts of the population. this. is seen as something that diminishes family and conservative ideas about how women should live so. yeah. so it's a president playing to his base. has domestic repression worked to silence the political opposition and what if anything could actually topple anyone from power. i think. the main problem is not with the economy economy is one of the biggest problems i think the government's biggest problem is
to actually remain in power. we've seen in the past 4 years are actually a reflection off the government facing the consequences of wrong moves and trying to recover it with taking some steps further in order to be able to remain in power we've seen that with. the we're seeing that with greece so nationalism is always an easy card to play and. so let me come back to. ask you how far you think are the one and who will be the loser. if that will face each other the countries with the. loser because in the. major. reason like in a major economy like you know also major and the same for europe as well.
. i'm not thinking about the job well i just sometimes i am but most end up in which the government thinks deep into the german culture of looking at the stereotypes aquatics put in here think the future of the country that i'm playing the piano needed to take from this drama they are to me it's all about a new i'm rachel join me to make the german fun d.w. . post. in the army of climate change. samina sit. ups are still facing. what ideas do they have for their future. g.w. dot com africa megacities for the 18th justice a clear cut answer. this is
a 15 year old girl. being gunned raped. his teacher is beating a boy for talking back and class. for the rest of the class watches. and cheer and toddlers being fed by his mother. breaking up lots. of child sleeps in the streets because her family through her. fear. online bullying. pushes a teenager over the edge. just because you can see violence against children doesn't mean others and there are the invisible visible of us might violence against children disappear.
this is detail the news live from berlin nato as its voice to demands for answers from moscow over the poisoning of russia's. position leader germany says it has proof that alexei navalny was dosed with a deadly nerve agent nato i'm to others want an international investigation the prime minister denies any involvement also on the program. a song for freedom in battle groups as protesters march for democracy and cool for an end to the dictatorship the exiled off.