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Why is France getting on Turkey’s nerves?

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31.03.2018

It would be useful to recall some chronological information before diving into the ongoing tension between France and Turkey over Syria. On Jan. 5, President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan paid a visit to Paris upon the invitation of French President Emmanuel Macron. It was Erdoğan’s first visit abroad in 2018 and marked Turkey’s efforts to reconcile with prominent European countries after a horrible year in ties. France’s new leader was subject to severe domestic criticisms for hosting Erdoğan because of the undemocratic inclinations of the Turkish leadership.

On Jan. 20, Turkey launched “Operation Olive Branch” into the Afrin province of Syria in order to eliminate the People’s Protection Units (YPG), the armed wing of the Democratic Union Party (PYD), on the grounds that both were the offshoot of the Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK) in Syria. On March 18, Turkey, along with the Free Syrian Army (FSA), captured Afrin and took control of the entire enclave in the days that followed.

France issued a number of statements calling Turkey and other countries to abide by resolution 2401 of the United Nations Security Council, which stipulates a one-month ceasefire in Syria. France’s sizeable Kurdish community has raised its voices against the French government to do more against the Turkish military campaign in Afrin.

On March 23, Macron held a phone conversation with President Erdoğan. A........

© Hürriyet Daily News