Germany–Turkey relations - Wikipedia
truism to cite Franco-German relations, and in a wider scale the development of Turkey's Economic Relations With Iran, Iraq and Syria. Developments in Damascus will affect Iraq's foreign relations. their own foreign relations, either with Iran or with Saudi Arabia, Qatar, or Turkey. .. Germany, India, Iran, Japan, Jordan, Kuwait, South Korea, Sri Lanka, Syria. the Middle East, particularly relations with Iran, Iraq, and Syria. At “Turkey's Kurds: Toward a Solution,” On Turkey, German Marshall Fund of the United.
Upon Turkey's accessionIstanbul would become the largest city of the European Union and Turkey would be the largest by land EU member. The German Chancellor, Angela Merkelhas advocated a "vaguely defined partnership"  and has opposed full membership of Turkey to the EU. We want full membership into the EU.
We don't want anything else than full membership. We need an implementation of the Ankara Protocols regarding unrestricted trade with Cyprus too.
Otherwise, the situation becomes very, very serious when it comes to the continuation of Turkey's accession negotiations. I appeal to Turkey to do everything to avoid such a complicated situation and not to lead the European Union into such a situation. Merkel also said that she could not imagine negotiations continuing without concessions made by Ankara toward opening up its ports to Cypriot ships.
On 20 Junein the wake of Ankara 's crackdown on mass demonstrations in Taksim Square and throughout the country, Germany blocked the start to new EU accession talks with Turkey.
He suggested during the visit that the German government establish Turkish medium schools and that German high schools hire more teachers from Turkey. I is situated in the Ehrenfeld district of Cologne, also collquially known as "Little Istanbul". While the idea of a gas pipeline through Turkey has been broached, no concrete steps have been taken in that direction. The government in Baghdad has also commissioned feasibility studies for an LNG facility off its narrow southern shore for future consideration.
Its main sources of water are the Tigris and Euphrates Rivers, both of which originate in Turkey. The Euphrates flows through Syria before reaching Iraq, and some tributaries of the Tigris and other smaller rivers that irrigate parts of eastern Iraq originate in Iran.
Unless Iraq maintains good relations with these neighbors, its already-low water levels could even go lower. The birthplace of agriculture and once the breadbasket of the Middle East, the country is suffering from severely declining river inflows as well as several years of below-average rainfall.
The declining river flows have several impacts: Iraqi officials report that less than half of arable Iraqi land is under production—down from percent in previous decades—and the land being used is producing inferior yields.
In the aftermath of the U. Several factors—the workforce shifting toward state employment, a lack of government subsidization, and the lingering effects of long years of severe drought—took their toll on agriculture. From toIraq witnessed its driest winters on record.Awkward relations between Germany and Turkey
The decline in agriculture has pushed hundreds of thousands of peasants, already ravaged by war and instability, into poverty or into the city slums, looking for work. The water decline has hit the southern marshlands particularly hard, drying them up and sending up tomarshland residents on the move to look for work or sustenance. Early efforts to negotiate with Turkey and Syria have fallen victim to crisis and worsening relations, and tensions between Baghdad and Erbil make cooperation over water even harder.
Tensions between Turkey and Iraq over water are long-standing, particularly as Turkey has pursued dam construction and irrigation projects in its eastern provinces. An agreement between the two countries signed in committed Turkey to allowing a minimum of cubic meters per second of water to flow into Iraq, but officials in Iraq insist that levels have fallen below that and might drop further.
German–Turkish Treaty of Friendship - Wikipedia
Iraq has turned to Iran for major food imports, and many farmers have resorted to digging expensive wells, which in turn negatively impact water tables and soil salinity.
Tensions with Syria over water have been high in the past, as Syria pursued dam and irrigation projects on the Euphrates. Iraq and Syria almost went to war over water in InIraq, Turkey, and Syria announced an agreement to establish a common water institution to manage the shared resource, but with the war in Syria this project is currently on hold. Water tensions are also a source of conflict between the Kurdish and Arab regions of Iraq. The Kurdish authorities in the north are proceeding with the construction of eleven dams, mainly along the Tigris, that will further restrict flows to the south and increase regional and ethnic tensions.
The northern provinces are the driest in Iraq, and these KRG dam projects aim to boost agricultural potential and electricity generation. Meeting Electricity Demand Ten years after the fall of the Saddam regime, Iraq is still unable to meet its domestic electricity consumption needs.
This deficit is a massive drag on all sectors of the economy. Current domestic production stands around 5, megawatts MWwhile demand is around 12, MW. There are 28 power plants operating in the country, and another 41 are under construction or contract. By that time, it is estimated that demand will have increased to 20,—21, MW. Iran is also constructing, at its own expense, a MW power plant in the holy Iraqi city of Najaf. Notably, Iran has great ambitions as an electricity exporter and already provides electricity to other neighbors, such as Turkey, Armenia, Afghanistan, and Pakistan.
The KRG is even beginning to sell electricity to several neighboring Iraqi provinces. From the beginning, Erbil accepted the principle of privatization in this sector and has given successful contracts for power generation to major international companies.
Only in did the central government open the door for serious outside help and begin awarding major contracts to foreign companies. With its massive oil and gas resources, Iraq has more than enough fossil fuel resources to generate the electricity needed to meet its domestic demand and to eventually become an electricity exporter.
Until then, and if the domestic energy production sector remains as dysfunctional as it has been, Baghdad will continue to be dependent on electricity imports from Iran, Turkey, and other neighbors, and its foreign policy will have to reflect those imperatives.
Many of them are themselves—or are closely linked to—new business elites who benefit from these economic opportunities.
A pattern of crony capitalism has emerged in which politicians and businessmen come together in mutually beneficial alliances. The new elites have embraced this change. Despite the instability and insecurity of the past decade, the Iraqi economy is one of the fastest growing in the region and has provided tremendous opportunities for trade and investment. The growth rate for is estimated at a robust 9 percent.
This trade is still dominated by energy exports. In the Kurdish north, Turkey dominates the economy—55 percent of companies in the KRG are Turkish, and 80 percent of imports come from Turkey.
As a sanctions- and war-ravaged country, Iraq has massive reconstruction, infrastructure, and development needs. Sincewhen a measure of limited stability began to return to Iraq following the surge in U. The largest sector of foreign investment and operation remains that of oil and gas. But other major sectors include construction and real estate, electricity, defense, transportation, telecommunications, agriculture, education, and healthcare.
To attract foreign investment into Iraq, the central government has offered various incentives: Iraq and the United States signed a Trade and Investment Framework Agreement inwhich the Iraqi parliament finally ratified and brought into force in The explosive growth in foreign investment and contracting has occurred despite a very low level of governance, particularly at the central government level.
And with high costs and the longest time required to export and import, Iraq ranked out of countries in the Trading Across Borders subcategory. The ruling elites in both Baghdad and Erbil are closely integrated with—or in many cases part of—the emerging Iraqi private sector and hence have a great interest in maintaining and increasing these international economic ties and potentially doubling or tripling the size of the Iraqi economy.
There are common interests and threads that run through these bilateral relationships, but each relationship also has its own political and economic contexts.
In many instances, the relations pursued by Baghdad differ from those pursued by Erbil. Friends Bordering on Allies After the U. Many of the current leaders in both Baghdad and Erbil have a history of good relations with Tehran, and the Shia-led government in Baghdad sees Iran as a long-term strategic friend in a potentially hostile Sunni-dominated rest of the region.
Iran pursued an ambiguous policy toward the U. But later Iran used its political and intelligence influence to undermine the prospect of a long-term U.
Erbil and Tehran shared a common enemy in Saddam Hussein and developed strong economic relations after As the date of the U. The Maliki government nevertheless went ahead with a strategic agreement with the United States despite Iranian objections. The deals will bring fairly advanced U. But Tehran gained considerable influence over Maliki by leaning on its Sadrist allies to enable him to form a government after the parliamentary elections.
Nevertheless, Maliki initially attempted to maintain an independent foreign policy, balancing close ties to Tehran with good relations with Washington and Ankara; Baghdad even sought to reclaim a central role for itself in the Arab world by hosting the Arab League meeting, first scheduled for but postponed and finally held in late March The war in Syria polarized the region, however, and as the crisis progressed, Baghdad moved more clearly into an axis that includes Iran, the Assad regime, and Hezbollah and is backstopped internationally by Russia and China.
This included allowing Iran to ferry support over Iraqi air and land routes to the Assad regime and allowing some Iraqi Shia militias to cross the border and fight for Assad in Syria. For now, Iraq has voiced strong support for a proposed UN-backed peace conference, referred to as Geneva II, to help resolve the Syrian crisis. Alongside similar interests in Syria, Baghdad and Tehran share energy interests.
Although Baghdad has repeatedly insisted that it has respected international economic sanctions against Iran, there is a large black market across the Iraq-Iran border, and Iran has likely been using Iraq as a main conduit for circumventing the sanctions.
Iraq’s Tangled Foreign Interests and Relations
If these sanctions are gradually lifted, legal trade between the two countries could supplant black market trade, fostering wider and deeper economic exchange in various sectors. Iranian companies have won major construction and infrastructure contracts in Iraq, and Tehran has also offered loans to Baghdad to aid in reconstruction.
Iran has a particular interest in the southern Shia region of Basra and the holy sites of Najaf and Karbala, which hundreds of thousands of Iranian pilgrims visit every year. Iran has offered infrastructure and housing projects in these sites in addition to its substantial electricity project in Najaf.
Despite this collaboration, there are a number of challenges in the Baghdad-Tehran relationship. The virtually landlocked and multicommunal Iraq cannot pursue the same radical policies that Tehran often does. The two countries have had border differences over water, oil, and security as well. Iranian damming of rivers and tributaries that flow into Iraq has caused protests among Iraqi farmers. A dispute over ownership of the Fakka oil field in the Misan Province almost led to minor armed clashes in Although there is considerable trade and political closeness between Baghdad and Tehran, cooperation in other areas—for example, energy, water, or military purchases—is surprisingly limited.
Also, there are tensions over several significant issues. The two countries also disagree over whether Qom in Iran or Najaf in Iraq is the true center of Shiism. Turkey was also drawn toward the enormous economic benefits of reconstruction in post-Saddam Iraq, seeing opportunities to grow Iraq as a major market for Turkish exports and access its vast oil and gas resources.
Ankara made numerous attempts to bolster its relations with both Sunni and Shia leaders in Iraq. But this pattern of good relations between Ankara and Baghdad dramatically changed around the turn of the decade. Relations deteriorated further as the Syrian uprising was met by bloody repression.
And as Turkey moved to support the Syrian rebels, Baghdad was allowing Iran to move support across Iraqi land and airspace to the embattled Syrian regime.
Geostrategically, the American withdrawal quickened the regional scramble for power—Ankara saw Baghdad drifting closer to Tehran and waging war to protect Iranian and Shia alliances in Syria; Baghdad saw Ankara siding with Sunni rebels in Syria and Sunni powers in the Gulf and Egypt and feared partial encirclement. From toAnkara and Erbil viewed each other virtually as enemies. Indeed, Turkish relations with those three countries were partly based on the Adana Protocol of in which Syria renounced its support of the PKK.
Inhowever, Ankara opposed opening a northern front against Saddam, partly to prevent U. Turkey feared that Kurdish control of Kirkuk would give the KRG further economic grounds for power and independence; in this position Ankara had common ground with Baghdad.
And all this put Turkish-KRG relations on tense footing. As long as U. It moved to try to build good relations with Ankara. The United States had been working hard to improve ties between Ankara and Erbil since in order to help stabilize the post situation in Iraq.
Erbil offered several enticements to Turkey, including lucrative construction deals, access to KRG energy resources, and promises to help moderate Kurdish positions in Turkey and to assist Ankara in dealing with the PKK. Turkish companies currently account for 80 percent of imports into the KRG, and Turkey might be the only strategic bulwark in the future if Baghdad moves to threaten the KRG.
The relationship was strengthened further in the course of the Syrian uprising: Erbil helped corral the various Syrian Kurdish groups, including the Democratic Union Party which is closely linked to the PKKto join a Syrian Kurdish coalition that supports the uprising against the Assad regime and that does not raise the ante against Turkey.
Economic and energy interests are also important to the Ankara-Erbil relationship. While Turkey has been losing ground in the southern governorates of Iraq, it has doubled down on its energy and economic interests in the northern KRG region.
While the United States had encouraged a general Ankara-Erbil rapprochement, it has been very critical of the use of this new axis to weaken central Iraqi government authority in Baghdad and potentially further destabilize and dismember Iraq. Washington has urged all three power centers to seek accommodation, and there is some evidence that this may come to pass.
Saudi Arabia severed diplomatic relations with Iraq in after Saddam invaded Kuwait. Despite American urgings after the U. Saudi Arabia backed Ayad Allawi and the Iraqiyya list in the elections and was dismayed when Maliki, with Iranian help, managed to form a government without Iraqiyya. As the Arab Spring unfolded, the two capitals differed over the uprising in Bahrain: Saudi Arabia backed the Sunni Al Khalifa monarchy and engineered a GCC military mission to quell the protests while Maliki expressed sympathy for the Shia-majority demonstrators.