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Monday, December 07, 2009

Turkey turns away from Israel-coddling U.S., E.U. towards alliance with Russia, Iran

Turkey's moves towards Iran concerning United States

(Telegraph) -- By Damien McElroy --

Recep Tayyip Erdogan, the Turkish prime minister, has introduced a "good neighbours" foreign policy that has tilted the axis of Ankara's diplomacy in the direction of Iran, Russia and bordering states.

Turkish frustration with a series of setbacks for its bid to join the European Union triggered a search for a foreign policy that reflect its historical interests in the Middle East, Caucasus and Islamic world.

Foreign intelligence officials sounded an alarm over Turkish manoeuvring closer to Iran, which has undermined the international campaign to isolate the Islamic regime. In particular it has allowed key members of the Islamic regime to move large sums of money – up to $10 million per day – into the global financial system.

Turkey has become a prized outlet for Iranian transactions since a tight regime of sanctions cut off Iranian banks from international finance.

Turkey was one of a handful of countries that refused to support a reprimand imposed on Iran over its failure to declare secret nuclear facility last month...

Turkish ties with Israel have been the primary victim of the new foreign policy. Israeli officials privately accused Mr Erdogan of playing the Muslim card in his fierce attacks on its three-week war on Hamas in Gaza last year.

Ibrahim Kalin, Mr Erdogan's chief foreign policy adviser, has claimed that Turkey does not have an anti-Western agenda. "We cannot neglect the problems in (neighbouring) regions. With our potential power and opportunities, we want to contribute to the establishment of a peaceful order."...MORE...LINK

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