The COVID-19 pandemic dominated the year 2020, as the world encountered a great test on health care, economy and humanity. Several countries confiscated each other’s personal protective equipment (PPE) and went down in the history of shame. Against the backdrop of all the chatter about “the new normal” and “nothing will be the same again,” the truth is that power competition in the international system has escalated even further.
President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan conveyed a powerful message to European leaders, who will meet later this week, in reference to the Eastern Mediterranean. He called on the European Union to save itself from “strategic blindness” and not to let Greece and the Greek Cypriots use Brussels as a battering ram.
President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan’s visit to Azerbaijan and the European Union leaders summit will be the top items on Turkey’s foreign policy agenda this week.
In recent years, the European Union has managed to overcome severe crises and inspire new candidates to full membership despite the unexpected Brexit decision. The union is still seen as a hub of peace and prosperity in spite of the gradual rise of extremist ideologies in the continent and European economies' declining role in global economic activity.
French President Emmanuel Macron is back on the stage with more of the outlandish claims we have come to expect. In a seeming attempt to make up for his failure to get the European Union to sanction Turkey, the Frenchman launched a fresh attack against Ankara. While German Chancellor Angela Merkel stresses the importance of interdependence and a constructive relationship, Macron continues to threaten Turkey with sanctions.