Azerbaijan as a Terrorist Hotbed: Arab Reaction

4 m.   |  2020-10-09

R ecently, President Bashar al-Assad in one of his interviews referred to Turkey’s terrorist activities including Azerbaijani aggression against Artsakh. “Erdogan supported terrorists in Syria and Libya. He is the main instigator and initiator of the clashes in Nagorno-Karabakh between Azerbaijan and Armenia. Erdogan’s behavior is dangerous for several reasons: First of all it reflects the approach of the “Muslim Brotherhood” extremist terrorist group. Second, Erdogan provokes wars in various regions to divert public attention from the internal problems of Turkey and foremost from the high-profile ties with the “Islamist State” terrorist group in Syria. This is the goal of Erdogan, which is dangerous. Turkey uses terrorists who came Syria from different countries, including Libya. We can surely state that Turkey uses terrorists from Syria and from other nationalities in Nagorno-Karabakh [1].

It should be noted, that Syria was the first Arab state, that officially and at the highest level announced about Turkey’s terrorist activities unleashed against Artsakh. It actually has its meaning. For more than a decade, Syria appeared under the target of various terrorist groups acting under the support of Turkey to create chaos in the country and dismantle the statehood of that country.  

Media-expert and official reactions to the Syrian President’s announcement are generally still quite limited.

The Israeli Jerusalem post referred to the accusations of the President of Syria addressed to Turkey: “Syrian President Bashar al-Assad stated, that Damascus can confirm the statement of French President that Turkey sent Syrian jihadists to Azerbaijan” [2]. The Israeli newspaper quotes the statement of the Director of the Foreign Intelligence Service of the RF Sergey Naryshkin: Moscow expresses concern that Nagorno-Karabakh could become a platform for international terrorist organizations to carry out terrorist acts in Russia and in other countries [3].

On October 6, in response to the journalist’s question how the Kremlin commented President Assad’s statement on the transportation of Syrian terrorists to Artsakh by Turkey, Russian President’s Spokesman only noted that the Kremlin is closely following the statements of the leaders of all countries [4].

The article published in Al-Monitor newspaper on October 2, was speaking about the opportunities of the Arab world to influence Turkey’s economy: “Turkey’s economy has considerably weakened due to the COVID-19 pandemic, there are serious problems related to the devaluation of Turkish currency. Notwithstanding, Turkey faces economic pressure from the Arab states, in response to its policy in the Middle East” [5]. Author Mustafa Sonmez mentioned in the article, that Saudi Arabia had already imposed a sanction on the import of Turkish goods. 

Recently, Egypt made a statement on the need to form a coalition against Turkey: “In the past two decades Turkey’s economic ties with Arab nations have grown both in terms of trade and inflows of investment and tourism. Arab nations, however, remain far from being Turkey’s top economic partners. However the efficient Arab boycott coming on top of Turkey’s existing economic woes, amid the dramatic  slump of the Turkish lira and an exodus of foreign investors can cause great damage” [6].

Based on Turkey’s statistics, during the 7 months of 2020, exports from this country amounted to about $90 bil., which decreased by about 13.7% compared to the same period last year [7].

On October 5, Ahmed Aboul Gheit, Secretary General of the League of Arab States stated, that Turkey’s role in increased regional tension in the Caucasus and Mediterranean regions, would have bad consequences for that country: “Turkey is facing a group of differences with regional and superpower parties to a degree that will not end well for it or its leadership. Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan is interfering in Egypt, Syria, Iraq and Libya militarily. Erdogan also interfered in the Caucasus between Azerbaijan and Armenia, collided with Greece and Cyprus, and attacked the eastern Mediterranean in the gas areas, which made a large and influential country like France send fighters and an aircraft carrier to Cyprus”[8].

Secretary General of the League of Arab States reaffirmed the facts about the involvement of terrorist groups in hostilities against Artsakh: “It annoys me that the Syrians use mercenaries to fight with Azerbaijan against Armenia: It is very sad that Syrian mercenaries are being used by Erdogan in cases that are unrelated to Turkey” [9].