BY ARMEN TIGRANAKERT

Turkey is going through a new stage of the economic crisis. The national currency depreciates at a record pace updating almost daily historic lows. This undoubtedly undermines financial stability and negatively affects the well-being of citizens.

It is obvious that the deterioration of the Turkish lira has become a challenge for both the internal and foreign  policy of Turkey. According to experts, the ₺10 for $1 barrier is psychologically significant for the population of Turkey. This is what moves Ankara to new adventures on the international scene, which should lead to national cohesion after conducting military campaigns abroad. The war is the only one way to distract the Turks in this situation.

There are a few ways, in which Ankara can raise patriotic spirits. Firstly, Turkey can make the idea of launching another operation in northern Syria a reality. But this scenario is very difficult for Erdogan, as he likely failed to reach a deal with Russian President Vladimir Putin, and the US made it clear that Turkey’s leader is not allowed to mess with the Kurds.

Libya is the second way, which Ankara could use to increase its military influence. But here, too, Turkey is severely constrained. The key actors in the Libyan crisis seek political dialogue and are waiting for the national elections in December of this year. Moreover, both representatives of international organizations and leaders of Western countries put pressure on Turkey to withdraw its forces and Syrian mercenaries from Libya.

Thus, Turkey has only one way to solve the existing problems. As recent events have shown, it is speculation on the Armenian-Azerbaijani conflict. Armenia and Azerbaijan saw violence at a border again after the war in the Nagorno-Karabakh region. The Turkish foreign minister jumped to accusations against Yerevan, declared full support to Baku, and Turkish drones were patrolling the Armenian-Turkish border at that time.

It is worth noting the US, the closest Turkey’s NATO ally, is deeply concerned about this situation. Particularly, American Senator Bob Menendez wrote about this on his Twitter. “Defense aid is helping to carry out these heinous crimes against ethnic Armenians. It’s time to accept my amendment to cut this aid,” he said.

Apparently the world community will reject new attempts of the Turkish leadership to artificially create another conflict between the Armenians and the Azerbaijanis. Given this situation, Ankara should pay special attention to internal problem solving without projection on the foreign policy taking care of the well-being of Turkey’s citizens.

Armen Tigranakert is a freelance journalist based in Aleppo, Syria

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