Trump will try to push Turkey side with U.S. against Iran - columnist

U.S. President Donald Trump will do everything possible to push Turkey side with Washington against Iran, and Ankara should maintain its calm, Akif Beki, a columnist of Karar daily, said on Saturday.

Beki said Ankara was right to stay silent following the U.S. air strike in Baghdad that killed the commander of Iran’s elite Quds Force Qassem Soleimani on Thursday and act cautiously.

The Turkish government did not comment on Soleimani’s death until Friday evening. The foreign ministry then issued a statement that said the U.S. air strike would increase the insecurity and the instability in the region and called on Washington and Tehran to use diplomatic mechanisms. 

“Not only Tehran, but also Washington will try to put pressure on Ankara to choose a side,” Beki said. 

Everything can be expected from Trump who can risk setting the whole world ablaze for his own interests, Beki said. “He (Trump) will use every way to engage Ankara in this issue or to show it on his side,” the columnist said. 

“Turkey is not obliged to choose a side,” Beki said. “Let’s pray Ankara can continue its neutral policy by resisting to all those pressures.”