Last week, the International Criminal Court (ICC) ruled it would extend its jurisdiction to the Israeli-occupied Palestinian territories, including the Gaza Strip, the West Bank and East Jerusalem.
The ongoing conflict between Armenia and Azerbaijan – which began with the former's recent aggression – has escalated rapidly since Azerbaijan retaliated in kind. Baku has indeed turned Yerevan's miscalculation into an opportunity to regain lost territories. So far, Azerbaijan has made some remarkable military gains to liberate some of its territories from the Armenian occupation.
Armenia engaged in acts of aggression in Nagorno-Karabakh, days after its attack on Tovuz in western Azerbaijan. That country opened fire on its neighbor’s civilian population on Sunday, which elicited a strong military response from Baku. A number of villages have since come under Azerbaijani control. It would appear that Yerevan made a huge miscalculation in the Caucasus and did not take seriously enough Turkey’s commitment to stand in solidarity with Azerbaijan.
After many years of waiting, Turkey’s Muslims rejoiced at the opportunity to perform their Friday and Eid prayers at the Hagia Sophia. That joy, to nobody’s surprise, went hand in hand with a war of words between Turkish politicians. Critics speculated that President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan’s administration intended to “restore the caliphate,” claiming that Turkey’s top imam had “cursed” Mustafa Kemal Atatürk, the republic’s founder, in his Friday sermon.
International focus has been on the Middle East for decades and particularly on Iran, Syria, Egypt, Iraq and Libya over the past several years. However, whatever is written about the Middle East, Russia is always part of the equation.