The USA, Germany, Belgium, Britain, France, Italy, Netherlands, Switzerland, and Sweden have shut down their consulates in Türkiye sighting certain threats. The ministry of foreign affairs of Türkiye has summoned 9 ambassadors on duty in Ankara of these countries following the closures.
The reason for this closure can extend from several points, like Türkiye’s disallowance to Sweden and Finland in NATO, the burning of the holy Quran in front of Türkiye’s consulate, and sending back of Kurdish militants to Türkiye by Denmark.
“Out of only a mere excuse, without any appropriate and specific logic, they said that due to receiving some concrete signs, they are closing consulates. But from whom, where, and how they get this, is still a word that yet to come from their side” – says Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu on the closure of 9 consulates.
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On the closure of consulates of these states, the foreign minister of Türkiye also added that “these countries have an obligation to share with our security units any information they get regarding attacks or something like this. If a thing happens like this, then the security team can take special measures to prevent the possibility of attacks before it turns into it. But not sharing so-called “concrete” information with us is not justifiable”.
The interior minister of Türkiye also added a hand to this. Criticizing the fact, he said that, “the closure which is beyond our expectations and has no valid explanation is just like ‘psychological warfare’ to us”. Following Türkiye’s announcement on the arrival of a total tourist of 51.5 million tourists and the earning of billions of revenue collected from these sources after the pandemic, the minister also added that “the west is deliberately trying to crack down on Türkiye’s tourism industry through these types of works”.
TRT World, a Türkiye-run news media recognizes these granaries of speeches to the west as “slam”.
Why the Travel ban issue becomes a hot topic?
In response to some anti-Turkish and anti-Islam activities and demonstrations, Türkiye’s foreign minister Mevlut Cavusoglu issued a travel warning for European countries in Turkish territory. Before that, in front of the Turkish embassy in Sweden, a group of demonstrators burned the holy Quran, the most revered book of Muslims, which fueled the hostile relation between these countries immediately, then spread to most of the powerful sites of the world.
In continuation, the fact, Norway, which has permission for its inhabitants to burn the holy Quran removes that permission after Türkiye’s warning. In a speech, the foreign minister of Türkiye said, you have ideas about what has happened in Sweden, Denmark, and the Netherlands on the subject of burning the holy Quran and accelerating hate speeches toward Islam. Freedom of expression doesn’t mean committing harm to human beliefs and feelings. This is just the thing we call “hate speech”. Spreading hate doesn’t mean something like freedom in any aspect.
Finland in, why not Sweden?
Another reason why these consulates closed their offices can be fueled by Türkiye’s not allowing Sweden and Finland. In its first phase, Türkiye expressed its view that they are not going to allow Finland and Sweden to enter into NATO, and a veto from any of the member countries means not approving an agenda.
So, it was obvious that, if Türkiye’s view didn’t change, then the hope of Sweden and Finland in entering into NATO will become a dream forever. But later, the President of Türkiye Recep Tayyip Erdogan said, they would allow Finland to join NATO but with some specific conditions. But they will not allow Sweden as long as this country continues to permit and patronize attacks on Islam.
Apart from this, Türkiye has another reason for not allowing Sweden to enter NATO. And that reason is related to the exchange of Kurdish militants to Türkiye. Sweden refused to send back some of the people who were supposed to be Kurdish militants, and Ankara asked for the sending of those people too. But not sending them back fueled the relationship to break down between Sweden and Türkiye. The attempt of a military coup that failed in 2016 also caused anger in Ankara toward Sweden.