Editorial: The Turkish crisis and us
Whatever the outcome of the spontaneous revolt in Turkey might be, what is certain is that Tayyip Erdogan is not the supreme ruler anymore. During his ten-year reign Turkey might have experienced an impressive growth rate, especially the new generation and emergent middle class and the Turkish people enjoyed increased rights. The methodical imposition of an Islamic culture with the simultaneous restriction of secularity might not bother a significant portion of the electorate body in Anatolia, but it deeply insults the people on the shore and more developed areas. It was only a matter of time when Erdogan’s megalomania and increasing authoritarianism would trigger reactions. All it took as a rather minor event, which quickly escalated due to the over-top reactions of the police.
It is clear that the once-dominant ruler has lost the trust of a significant part of Turkish society. Despite the lack of a strong Opposition, the future doesn’t look that rosy, due to the serious problems relations with neighboring war-torn Syria and Israel. Despite trying to amass supreme power through a constitutional reform, assuming the position of President of Democracy will not be a walk in the part as previously thought. No country can be governed with social peace and no politician, regardless of how powerful, can rule by trampling on the people’s rights and freedoms.
The instability in Turkey in conjunction with the civil war in Syria is not the greatest development for our region. We have enough problems of our own, we do not need t add any further uncertainty to the southeast Mediterranean. We should know by now that every time our neighbors experienced internal problems, they had an impact on our bilateral relations.
It is imperative that Greece becomes a pillar of stability and security in the region. Regardless of how things are complicated by the financial crisis, the government and opposition must ensure that whatever political disagreements and conflicts arise do not fuel the climate of political instability. That is the last thing we need right now. The crisis in Turkey demonstrates just how important the European perspective has been for our country. It is the safest way to protect the individual rights and freedoms of our people as well as to ensure financial stability. That is the path we must take.