Macron says Turkey 'sometimes works with IS proxies'

Thursday, 05 Dec, 2019

NATO Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg appeared dismissive of the whole matter, saying that NATO's entire alliance will respond militarily to any attacks of the Baltic countries.

He said the conversation, "was concentrated around the most important issues and concerned the alliance as such, the values that it serves, and also the London summit and the aims for which the meeting stands - maintaining alliance solidarity".

Macron said he felt a four-way meeting on Tuesday with Erdogan and the British and German leaders had helped "clear up misunderstandings", adding he thought the Turkish leader had concluded blocking the plan was not in his interests.

"If NATO has a motto, it is: "One for all, and all for one".

"What is wanted for the Baltics should be wanted for us too", Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlüt Çavuşoğlu said last week.

There also were disagreements within the alliance, most notably between the US and France, on whether China should be viewed as an adversary at all. "The cease-fire is holding very much so, and I think people are surprised, and maybe some day they'll give me credit, but probably not".

Several NATO members also condemned Turkey's decision to launch an offensive in northeastern Syria against the Kurdish group YPG.

"When I look at Turkey they are fighting against those who fought with us shoulder to shoulder against ISIS (Islamic State) and sometimes they work with ISIS proxies".

Merkel said she was "relatively optimistic" after the meeting, but Macron warned that "not all clarifications were obtained and not all ambiguities were resolved".

And secondly, he said it would have to be asked whether Turkey wants to remain a member of North Atlantic Treaty Organisation if Erdogan makes good on a threat to delay Baltic defence measures unless allies declare the Kurdish militia terrorists. "The two presidents agreed to meet during the summit in the presence of Baltic state officials".

Trump cited in particular Germany as falling short, spending only 1.2 percent of GDP.

Although NATO managed to take steps forward in London, there was acrimony among some of its leaders.

The allies will approve a new strategy to monitor China's growing military activity, and identify space as a domain of warfare, alongside air, land, sea and computer networks.