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Star - Turkey | Monday, June 16, 2014

The price of Turkey's active foreign policy

The terror organisation Isil has been holding 49 employees of the Turkish consulate in Mosul hostage since Wednesday. In the meantime the Turkish government has come under fire for not doing enough to protect its citizens in Iraq. The pro-government daily Star sees no grounds for such accusations: "For some time Turkey has countered the wait-and-see attitude of the US and Europe with a more active foreign policy that takes risks and exploits opportunities, and is expanding its room for manoeuvre in the Middle East and Africa. And that's important. For example it would have been very old school for Turkey to remain neutral in the conflict between the Iraqi central government and Kurdish northern Iraq. The new style focused on taking risks without waiting around and on tapping into the region's oil supplies. ... But this new style can mean stepping on the toes of the players in the region. Or unpredictable security problems can arise, such as we are now seeing with the hostage taking of consular employees in Mosul."

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