Interview in the Turkish embassy
17 julio, 2015
Turkey is the connecting point between Europe and the Middle East. It is located in a key position with a lot of civilizations. Turkey wants to be part of the European Union since 1963 and they have been negotiating since 2005.
Çagdas BILGIN is a political advisor in the Turkish embassy in Spain and he is also the personal manager in the embassy. Since he started working there 8 months ago, his function has been observing all the issues related to the support of the relations between Turkey and Spain in international organizations such as United Nations or the OTAM.
The relation between Spain and Turkey is positive and it is in an increasing process. There are very good political and economic relations. Spain has always supported Turkey in the process of being in the European Union.
I decided to know more about the point of view of Turkey as their strategic situation makes them have a different point of view of the middle East’ problems.
During the interview, I realized how Turkey put a lot of efforts providing help to people around them which have conflicts in their countries, such as the Syria conflict, and it confirmed me how media does not show this kind of help because it does not attract enough attention.
As Çagdas BILGIN said talking about how they handle the situation of being in a key position between two areas, that makes them have a mix of trade. He also answer taking up their stance: ” Turkey has been traditionally moved toward Europe since the Ottoman Empire, as we came from Europe. We have always look to Europe, we focus more on it.”
On the other hand, when I asked him about their relations with the Middle East, he wanted to be very clear about their support to the democracy in that area as he said: ” We promote legitimate governments that represents the will of people”. He emphasized the importance of stability and democracy in this situation, as more stability would help Turkey economy.
Related to their economy and its prosperity, he said that because of the European crisis, that it also affected to their trade with them, there was a trade increase with the Middle East. This has made a lot of critics of how they are getting away from Europe, and he claim : ” We had to do it. The European crisis also affected us and if we find new markets open, we have more trade partners and we can have a better strong economy.We are looking for new markets while promoting stability in our region.
He also underscored the importance of exportations in their economy, and as it is slowing down, they should look for new technology and productive methods to increase their exportations.
When we deal about what is going on in Syria and the Islamic State, he wanted to make clear the danger of being in their position because of their close situation to them, with no borders. He expressed the necessity of a political solution: ”There should be international support of the legitimate representation of Syrian people.” The solution is through negotiations with the support of the international community.
Their proposals for helping Syria is: ”Not direct intervention, but supporting the Syrian opposition. A lot are doing the political process from Turkey, promoting it.” They are also cooperating with the United States providing equipment: TRAIN AND EQUIPMENT.
Dealing with the situation of all the refugees that are fleeing from the war and going to Turkey, he stressed how they are taking in a lot of refugees, but even though they have camps they need to create more refugees and for that, the international committee has to put money. since the
beginning they have only received 6 billions dollars from the US and 2.5 millions from the international community. ”It is easy to criticize Turkey but it is all on us”.
He wanted to explain me the situation,: ”At first, people were helping a lot because we had resources and we didn’t think it was going to take so long, but in this situation, they are getting concentrated in some neighborhoods, and they are stating to see them as strangers and that is creating tensions”.
Finally, trying to sum up all the information related to the same issue, my last question was about why Turkey does not join the international coalition that is bombing right now the Islamic State, allowing them to use their air basis. His answer was very strict: ” Turkey is supporting them. Cobani was saved thanks to Turkey, they crushed the Turkish borders, we didn’t intervene but we accept and provide aid to people. That doesn’t appear on TV. If you want a coalition to make an attack, let’s do it all of us, not just bombing.”