Growing tensions between Ankara and Moscow

After the most recent attack in Ankara observers fear Turkey could hit back with an offensive in Syria, provoking an open confrontation between Moscow and Ankara. How will the two countries react?

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De Telegraaf (NL) /

Obama must slow Turkey down in Syria

In view of the growing tensions between Russia and Turkey in Syria Obama urgently needs to take action, the conservative daily De Telegraaf demands:

“The question now is who can stop Turkey. Europe isn't keen to up the pressure on Ankara. It needs Turkey to stop the flood of refugees. So that leaves the US. … The American president needs to finally give his full attention to the Middle East. His reserved stance has allowed the conflict to get out of control in recent years. Obama must swiftly intervene to stop Turkey and Russia. This is no longer just about Syria's future but that of the entire region. And perhaps the whole world.”

Les Echos (FR) /

Moscow could face Nato with a dilemma

Russian President Putin may have his sights set on Nato, the liberal business paper Les Echos warns:

“Vladimir Putin is playing a very offensive poker game and may have spotted an opportunity to torpedo Nato. That could involve using the flimsiest pretext - such as the downing of a Russian fighter jet by Turkey at the end of November - to launch a major counterattack on Turkish territory. That would face Nato with an unbearable dilemma: invoking Article 5 and going to war on the behalf of its bothersome Turkish ally, or rejecting that option and ruining the Alliance’s credibility. … It should be pointed out however that Nato can still save face without actually starting a conflict with Russia. Because Article 5 doesn't oblige Nato’s armies to fight, just to take all necessary action, for example providing arms and intelligence.”