May 16 2018

Turkey at risk of two more conflicts – analyst

Two of the global flashpoints at risk of conflict highlighted by Steven Cook, senior fellow at the Council of Foreign Relations think tank in Washington, D.C., in a new article involve Turkey.

Turkey and Greece have had increasingly tense relations, with the Greeks “forced to scramble aircraft 16 times in a single day to challenge Turkey’s intrusions” over the Aegean Sea, Cook said.

“What happens if there is an accident or some type of miscalculation and another Greek pilot or two are killed? What if the Turks lose a helicopter? Tensions are so high it isn’t hard to imagine shooting, even if everyone wants to avoid that outcome,” he said.

The U.S. State Department should be warning Turkey to cease its aggression in the Aegean, he added.

Turkey had also become a stakeholder in the Horn of Africa, Cook said, another region at danger of war.

The Egyptians and Sudanese have sided against the Ethiopians in a dispute over the construction of a dam, Cook said, but there are other tensions between Sudan, which has recently upgraded security ties with Turkey and Qatar, and Egypt, whose military leadership is the nemesis of both the Qatari and Turkish governments.

“The Turkish and Qatari overtures to Sudan along with Turkey’s control — by agreement with Khartoum — of the Sudanese island Suakin, located at a strategic point in the Red Sea, have added a new dimension to Egyptian concerns,” Cook said.