How will the Libyan file affect Erdogan’s future?


Source: Washington – Bandar Al-Doshi

The Guardian newspaper said on Monday that the Libyan file may constitute a major turning point in the future of Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan, given the very weak internal support for sending Turkish soldiers to Libya, and the increasing cleavages within the ruling party, amid other internal and external crises.

In the details, the newspaper says, in its report, that Turkey is preparing for another turbulent year in both domestic politics and on the world stage, where its President Erdogan sends forces to Libya, while fighting new separatist parties at home.

In an emergency session, the Turkish parliament passed a bill authorizing the deployment of forces to support the Libyan government, a move the United Nations opposes, which may appear to represent great flexibility in Ankaras diplomatic and military muscle, but runs the risk of a major escalation in the complex nine-year conflict.

On Sunday, Erdogan said that only 35 soldiers had been sent on an advisory mission to Tripoli.

But the Guardian newspaper got information showing that as many as 300 Syrian fighters, on the Turkish payroll, have already arrived to support the government of Fayez al-Sarraj, who is fighting an ongoing confrontation in the capital against the forces of Field Marshal Khalifa Haftar.

Most likely, the motive behind this bold move from Turkey is the desire to confront regional opponents in a proxy-turned war on Libyan soil, in addition to Turkey’s attempt to defend a recent memorandum of understanding signed with Al-Sarraj, through which Ankara and Tripoli agreed to grant exploration rights in the Mediterranean For Turkey, which drew objections from Egypt, France and Greece.

The newspaper adds that, unlike the incursion last October in the Kurdish-controlled parts of Syria, interference in Libya has little support among the Turks, adding to the escalating internal headache of the ruling party in Turkey.

Ahmed Davutoglu, Ali Babacan and Rajab Tayyip Erdogan
Ahmed Davutoglu, Ali Babacan and Rajab Tayyip Erdogan

The newspaper pointed out that the former Prime Minister, Ahmed Davutoglu, and former Finance Minister Ali Babacan, had resigned in recent months from the ruling Justice and Development Party to form their separatist opposition parties.

Due largely to Turkey’s economic problems, the Justice and Development Party lost 10% of its membership last year, creating a new bloc of frustrated voters who aspire to electoral success.

For the first time, the Justice and Development Party suffered humiliating defeats in several major cities in the 2019 local elections, and the feeling that Erdogan had begun to lose his magic touch after 17 years in office, was compounded by an embarrassing strategic miscalculation due to the re-race of the mayor of Istanbul and the loss of a party Erdogan for the position again.

The newspaper added: While Turkey is not supposed to hold general elections before 2023, under the country’s new presidential system, opposition party alliances will need only a few points from the Justice and Development Party coalition allied with the right-wing National Movement (MHP) to destroy The weak majority in the government.

A former deputy in the Justice and Development Party says that this opposition movement has been growing for a long time, but the re-election in Istanbul and the defeat of Erdogan is the point where the new parties realized that they needed to go out into the open.

“There is a lot of soul-searching in the conservative camp right now,” she said. “It’s great that they started to speak and criticize freely.”

The newspaper pointed out that Turkey’s foreign policy ambitions make the future unexpected. Recently, Erdogan has diverted public attention from domestic issues to international issues, and often indicates that the country is locked in an existential struggle with enemies such as the United States and Kurdish armed groups, to enlist national support, and a framework for intervention in Libya is likely to be developed as part From the same strategy.

It is not clear how the government will deal with a potential new domestic threat, but it is likely that the tactics used in the past to weaken the opposition will intensify, such as the removal of pro-Kurdish representatives of the “Democratic Party”, and also the removal of representatives of the “Republican People’s Party” from their positions on the pretext of legal challenges or Criminal, according to Senem Adar, researcher at the German Institute for International and Security Affairs in Berlin.

She adds: “From a pessimistic viewpoint, the year 2020 may deepen the political crisis in Turkey by shifting to the use of unconstitutional means.”

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