Russia and Turkey after the coup

Pro-government supporters rally in Istanbul after failed military coup
July 25, 2016: Supporters of Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan rally on Istanbul’s Taksim Square against accused plotters in the failed July 16 coup (source: dpa)
  • Post-coup crackdown in Turkey may wreck relations with EU, including migrant deal
  • Turkish ouster or departure from NATO is a worst case, not a baseline scenario
  • New era of Russia-Turkish cooperation underpinned by the two presidents' personal affinity

The attempted military coup in Turkey arrived as yet another nasty surprise for a Europe in desperate need of stability. The initial response from Western governments was relief that it had not succeeded. But that relief was soon to be laced with increasing apprehension about the potentially negative geopolitical consequences.

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan has a long established record of jailing journalists, suppressing human rights and cracking down on anyone whose “conspiracies” undermine his authority. His present implementation of sweeping purges of opponents across the board will add to Western concerns over this slide toward authoritarian rule.

Russian President Vladimir Putin, in contrast, has reason to look at the future with grim satisfaction.

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