Region

Turkey and the Levant

Stories under this heading cover Turkey as well as the Levant – a large area in the Eastern Mediterranean region of Western Asia, consisting of Syria, Lebanon, Jordan, Israel and Palestine.

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Fears Lebanon is sliding back to civil war after street violence in Beirut on Thursday

Fears Lebanon is sliding back to civil war after street violence in Beirut on Thursday

Lebanon has a history of decades of sectarian strife between Christians and Muslims, and groups within them. Foreign interference since the 1950's has made Lebanon a battle field for Middle East states and groups to fight proxy wars. The latest incidents raise concerns of a further deterioration of what is already for many Lebanese people a very dire situation.

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 Erdogan congratulates new Israeli president in first high-level contact between the two countries in years

Erdogan congratulates new Israeli president in first high-level contact between the two countries in years

The Turkish president, Recip Tayip Erdogan, on Monday (July 12)  spoke on the phone with his Israeli counterpart Isaac Herzog and discussed relations between the two countries as well as regional issues. This was the first high-level contact between Turkey and Israel in years. Relations between the two countries have been strained as a result of Israeli policy towards the Palestinians and Israel's perception of Turkish support for radical Palestinian groups.
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Egypt, Jordan and Iraq hold summit in Baghdad

Egypt, Jordan and Iraq hold summit in Baghdad

The Egypt-Jordan-Iraq summit comes within the framework of the tripartite co-operation mechanism between the three countries, which held its first round in Cairo in March 2019. Whilst not mentioned in official statements, the trilateral relationship established between Egypt, Iraq and Jordan is seen partly as an attempt to neutralise Iran’s influence across the region.
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EU leaders look at relations with the countries to the East

EU leaders look at relations with the countries to the East

EU leaders on Thursday (24 June) EU's relations with Russia and Turkey, two important and strategic countries with whom the European Union has a complex relationship. The tone adopted in dealing with the two countries was very different, as is appropriate given that Turkey remains an EU candidate country, whilst Russia is increasingly seen as a disruptive neighbour and rival.