Turkey

Global Europe 16-10-2019

Turkey pushes offensive in Syria, while Russia moves in where US moved out

Turkey vowed to press ahead with its offensive in northern Syria on Tuesday (15 October) despite US sanctions and growing calls for it to stop, while Syria's Russia-backed army moved on the key city of Manbij that was abandoned by US forces.

Erdogan thanks Orban for ‘support at the international stage’

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan and Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orbán met in Baku on Tuesday (15 October), on the fringes of the Turkic Council, a group of countries speaking the same family of languages, which Hungary wants to join.
Global Europe 15-10-2019

VW puts on hold plan for €1 bln car factory in Turkey over Syria incursion

Volkswagen has postponed the decision on opening a new car factory in Turkey against the background of the Turkish military offensive in Syria. "The final decision for the new plant was postponed by the Board of Management of Volkswagen AG," a company spokesman said on Tuesday (15 October), confirming media reports.
Global Europe 15-10-2019

Russia-backed Syrian army sweeps in to fill US-left vacuum

Russia-backed Syrian forces took rapid advantage of an abrupt US retreat from Syria on Monday (14 October), deploying deep inside Kurdish-held territory south of the Turkish frontier less than 24 hours after Washington announced a full withdrawal.
Global Europe 14-10-2019

Trump prepares to drop sanctions hammer on Turkey

President Donald Trump’s administration is set to impose economic sanctions on Ankara, potentially as early as this week, for its incursion into northern Syria, one of the few levers the United States still has over NATO-ally Turkey.
Global Europe 14-10-2019

Bulgaria PM will ask EU leaders to stop criticising Erdogan

European Council President Donald Tusk strongly opposed Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan on Friday (11 October), warning him to stop blackmailing Europe. That has prompted Bulgaria’s prime minister to reveal he will ask EU chiefs to tone down their stance against Erdoğan.
Global Europe 14-10-2019

Macron, Merkel call for end to Turkish invasion in Syria

The leaders of France and Germany called Sunday (13 October) for an end to Turkey's offensive against Kurds in northern Syria, warning of dire humanitarian consequences and a boost for the Islamic State group.
Global Europe 11-10-2019

Thousands flee, hundreds reported dead in Turkish attack on Kurds in Syria

Turkey pounded Kurdish militia in northeast Syria for a second day on Thursday (10 October), forcing tens of thousands of people to flee and killing at least dozens of people in a cross-border assault on US allies that has turned the Washington establishment against President Donald Trump.
Global Europe 10-10-2019

The Brief, powered by the Martens Centre – A missing EU word, a lost EU state

Turkish forces have launched airstrikes this week and advanced deeper into Kurdish-held areas in northeast Syria during the second day of Ankara’s invasion in the region. The EU sat on its hands and then came up with a cautious, watered-down statement. Why?
Global Europe 10-10-2019

EU urges Turkey to halt Syria invasion, will not pay for ‘safe zone’

The EU on Wednesday (9 October) demanded Turkey halt its military operation against Kurdish militants in northern Syria, telling Ankara the bloc would not pay for any so-called "safe zone" that might be created.
Global Europe 09-10-2019

Turkish and Syrian rebel forces to start Syria offensive ‘shortly’

Turkish forces, together with the rebel Free Syrian Army, will cross the Syrian border "shortly", President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan’s communications director said early on Wednesday (9 October), as a surprise withdrawal of US troops made way for the Turkish incursion.
Global Europe 08-10-2019

Trump reconsiders Syria withdrawal, strongly warns Turkey against military adventures

US President Donald Trump warned Turkey Monday (6 October) against going too far in Syria, one day after giving Ankara a green light to invade its southern neighbor, sparking panic among Washington's Kurdish allies.
Global Europe 07-10-2019

Turkey moves to ‘clean’ northeastern Syria from Kurds, plans to re-settle 2 million refugees

Turkish President Tayyip Erdoğan and US President Donald Trump discussed Turkey's plans to establish a "safe zone" east of the Euphrates River in Syria in a phone call on Sunday (6 October), but the White House said US forces would not be involved.
Global Europe 07-10-2019

US warns Turkey over offshore drilling near Cyprus

There are rules in exploring energy resources in the Mediterranean Sea, US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said on Saturday (5 October), warning Turkey not to engage in drilling activity that is "illegal" and "unacceptable".
Global Europe 04-10-2019

Tensions grow as Cyprus says Turkish drilling ship violates its rights

Tensions between Cyprus and Turkey over offshore drilling intensified on Friday (4 October) when Nicosia said a decision to send a ship to an area it had already licensed was a "severe escalation" of Turkish violations of its sovereign rights.

Germany’s conservative interior minister now a ‘refugee saviour’

Today, Germany's conservative interior minister Horst Seehofer (CSU) is travelling to Athens to prevent a situation like the 2015 refugee crisis to happen again. He is using the opportunity to work on his image as a 'problem-solver' and is even seeking Turkey's help. EURACTIV's media partner Der Tagesspiegel reports.

Greek PM calls for new EU aid to Turkey to stop migrants

Greece's new conservative leader on Thursday (26 September) called for the European Union to commit more money to support Turkey to stem the rising flow of migrants.

Erdogan, Mitsotakis discuss curbing migrants

Greece's new conservative prime minister met Wednesday (25 September) with Turkey's leader for the first time and asked for cooperation in stemming an uptick in migrant arrivals.
Languages & Culture 25-09-2019

New MEP asks Commission for Turkish to become official EU language

New leftist Cypriot MEP Akel Niyazi Kizilyurek asked the EU Commission whether Turkish could be the EU's 25th language. According to the MEP, this would be one way to prepare for the future reunification of the island of Cyprus. EURACTIV's partner Ouest-France reports.

Commission ‘aware’ of increase of migrants to Greece, Bulgaria

The European Commission said on Tuesday (24 September) it was aware of the recent increase of migrants coming illegally from Turkey into EU members Bulgaria and Greece but dismissed any immediate plans for a possible new migration deal with Ankara.
Global Europe 24-09-2019

UN sets constitution committee for Syria, but hopes to end war muted

The United Nations announced Monday (23 September) the long-awaited creation of a constitution-writing committee on Syria that will include the government and opposition, but it remained to be seen if the step could finally end the civil war.

Greek PM urges talks, rejects Turkish refugee ‘threats’

Greek Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis rejected on Sunday (8 September) Turkish "threats" to let Syrian refugees come en masse to Europe unless more international aid was provided and called for neighbourly dialogue instead.
Global Europe 09-09-2019

US, Turkey launch joint patrols in northeast Syria

The United States and Turkey on Sunday (8 September)  began joint patrols in northeastern Syria aimed at easing tensions between Ankara and US-backed Kurdish forces who battled the Islamic State jihadist group.
Global Europe 28-08-2019

Putin, Erdogan agree steps to tackle militants in Syria’s Idlib

President Vladimir Putin said on Tuesday (27 August) that Russia and Turkey had agreed steps to tackle militants in northwest Syria and “normalize” the situation there after a Syrian army offensive encircled rebel fighters and a Turkish military post.

Want to know what's going on in the EU Capitals daily? Subscribe now to our new 9am newsletter.