Turkish President Recep Erdogan decided not to expel ambassadors of ten Western states from the country. About it Turkish leader informed at a press conference in Ankara, stressing that the ambassadors “backed down” and “will henceforth be careful in their statements.” In fact, Europe caved in under Erdogan.
Earlier that day, the embassies of Canada, France, Finland, Denmark, Germany, the Netherlands, New Zealand, Norway, Sweden and the United States tweeted a statement indicating that, in accordance with the Vienna Convention on Diplomatic Relations, they did not intend to interfere in internal affairs of Turkey.
On October 23, Erdogan gave an order to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs expel ambassadors of ten Western states from the country after they issued a call for the release of Turkish human rights activist and philanthropist Osman Kavala, suspected of attempted coup d’etat.
The European Union, represented by the President of the European Parliament David Sassoli, stated: “Do not intimidate us”, – emphasizing that expelling 10 ambassadors from Turkey is a sign of a turn towards authoritarianism on the part of the Turkish government.
The expulsion of ten ambassadors is a sign of the authoritarian drift of the Turkish government. We will not be intimidated.
Freedom for Osman Kavala.
– David Sassoli (@EP_President) October 23, 2021
Two days ago, speaking about Osman Kavala – an issue that is causing new turmoil in relations between Turkey and the West – the Turkish president called for the expulsion of ambassadors from ten countries, including the United States, Germany and France, who signed a joint appeal calling for the release of the 64-year-old Turkish businessman.
He characteristically put it: “Did the European Court of Human Rights decide this? Do they want to condemn Turkey because of this after Soros named Kavala? Why are these ten ambassadors making such statements? I told our Foreign Ministry that we cannot afford the luxury of hosting them in our country. Is it your business to give a lesson to Turkey? Who you are? Leave Kavala. Do you leave murderers, terrorists and bandits in your own countries? “
Turkish businessman, human rights activist and philanthropist Osman Kavala was arrested in 2017 on charges related to the 2013 protests against deforestation in Gezi Park in Turkey. He was acquitted in this case, and then charged with participation in a coup attempt in 2016. He denies them.
The European Court of Human Rights (ECHR) in 2019 demanded the release of Kavala, believing that the court did not have enough evidence to support the charges. The ECHR also concluded that the arrest of the businessman was carried out in order to silence him.
In 2020, charges related to the 2013 protests were dropped from him, but the decision was later overturned and the case was again merged with the coup proceedings.
In January 2021, the Court of Appeal overturned the first acquittal. If now Osman Kavala is convicted on charges of espionage, he faces life imprisonment. The trial in the Kavala case was scheduled for November 26. To date, only one thing is known: “Europe caved in under Erdogan, which means that Europe is weak.” This is how this decision will be perceived throughout the world.
PS I wonder if Putin sent ambassadors for interfering with the Navalny court? Would Europe also bend, or is it different?