Political situation in Turkey – Achilles’ heel in Ankara-Moscow relations

Political situation in Turkey – Achilles’ heel in Ankara-Moscow relations

Baku, Azerbaijan, June 10

By Rufiz Hafizoglu - Trend:

Today, Turkey and Russia enjoy very good relations, and this was certainly achieved through the efforts of Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan and Russian President Vladimir Putin.

In fact, the Turkish-Russian rapprochement is in the interests of the whole region, and the efforts made by the two countries are most clearly manifested in Syria in particular.

Turkey and Russia are also important trade and economic partners. For example, according to the Ministry of Trade of Turkey, trade between the two countries amounted to $8.247 billion in May 2019, while in 2018 the trade turnover between the two countries made up $25.389 billion.

One can talk for hours about the two countries’ relations and the importance of dialogue between Ankara and Moscow; however, despite the strength of these relations, built on mutual interests, there are still a few risks to consider.

These include, first of all, the political situation in Turkey – or, more precisely, the situation that has formed after the municipal elections in the country.

It is no secret to anyone that a new political party is being formed in Turkey, headed by ex-minister of economic affairs and ex-foreign minister Ali Babacan, and Ahmet Davutoglu and Abdullah Gul will be joining this political movement.

Davutoglu, who has quite a lot of supporters in Turkey, is indeed the strongest figure in this political trio. Davutoglu, who has been excluded from taking part in the political life of Turkey, has already gotten active, softly criticizing the internal policy of the authorities.

As of now, with the exception of Erdogan and several other politicians, the current Turkish authorities are lacking strong personnel.

Political experts are not ruling out that the creation of a new political party may lead to tangible changes in Turkey, and the current authorities of the country are, of course, aware of this.

If a new political party is to be formed in Turkey by 2024, it will be able to gain a noticeable amount of the popular vote, which will lead to a number of AKP members, as well as members of other parties, joining the new movement. Another important fact to take into account is that Turkey will hold presidential elections in 2023, where, according to most political experts, the current president will not participate.

The main candidates for the presidency will undoubtedly be Ekrem Imamoglu and, of course, Berat Albayrak. Which of the listed candidates will have a greater chance of winning largely depends on the political situation that will form with the creation of the new political party.

It is worth noting that, should the new political party headed by the trio be able to rise to power after its formation, this will primarily affect the relations between Turkey and Russia – as, starting from then, Ankara, just as before, will begin to conduct pro-Western policies. This is the Achilles' heel in relations between Ankara and Moscow.


Rufiz Hafizoglu, deputy editor-in-chief of Trend. Follow him on Twitter: @rhafizoglu

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