Berlin refusing to export arms to Turkey
The German government has rejected several requests from Ankara for arms exports in recent months. The human rights situation in Turkey since the failed coup and the Kurdish-Turkish conflict have been cited as reasons for this. Normally, sales of arms to a Nato partner are approved as a matter of course. Berlin has discovered Erdoğan's weak point, some media rejoice, while pro-government Turkish journalists see Ankara's fight against terror as being thwarted.
Erdoğan's Achilles heel
Refusing to export German weapons to Turkey is the most effective response to Erdoğan's rhetoric, writes Hospodářské noviny:
“The weapons exports episode highlights the weaknesses of Erdoğan's policy. Turkey can adopt a harsher tone in its relations with Europe but it can do little to alter the fact that the EU member states are the biggest investors in Turkey. If the threats lead to a real conflict, Turkey may end up paying dearly in view of the current state of the Turkish economy. We saw in the case of Putin's Russia that Erdoğan is capable of returning to pragmatism. But we also know of many cases in which the rifts caused by rhetoric could no longer be repaired.”
Thwarting Ankara's fight against terror
The arguments used to reject applications for arms exports are an attack against the Turkish state, the pro-government daily Sabah rails:
“In this way Germany is trying to hinder the battle being fought against terrorist organisations on Turkish soil. … Readers may remember how prior to the failed coup many Western states, including Germany, accused Turkey of not doing enough to fight the IS. … Yes, the writers of Western mainstream media even shamelessly spread the lie that Turkey was supporting the IS. The page was then turned and after [the attempted coup of] July 15 the state developed, together with the purges carried out against [the Gülen movement] FETÖ, a new perception of the threats it faced and began a very effective campaign against the IS. Turkey's war against the IS has been more effective than that of any other state. Even without the support of a single Western state.”