Turkey: Western embassy closures in Istanbul serve terrorist goals
The Turkish Ministry of Foreign Affairs summons ambassadors of Western countries as it considered closure of their embassies in Istanbul to be disproportionate.
A ministry source informed Sputnik that the Turkish Foreign Ministry summoned ambassadors from various Western nations on Thursday to inform them that consulate closures served only terrorist goals.
Following a string of Quran-burning demonstrations in Northern Europe, Sweden, the Netherlands, Germany, France, Switzerland, and the United Kingdom all halted operations at their consulates in Istanbul this week, citing security concerns. Furthermore, travel advisories were issued by the US and numerous other countries.
"Our ministry summoned envoys of the US, the Netherlands, Switzerland, Sweden, the UK, Germany, Belgium, France, and Italy… They were reminded that security of all diplomatic missions in our country is provided based on international conventions," the diplomat said.
Closures and warnings, the source continued, were not considered a "proportional or commonsense approach and only serve the evil schemes of terrorist organizations." Rather, it was requested that Western countries cooperate with Turkish security forces.
Suleyman Soylu, the Turkish Interior Minister, claimed that when his nation opposed the sacrilegious act of Quran-burning in Sweden, Denmark, and the Netherlands, the West was waging "psychological warfare" against his country.
Following the outbreak of the Ukraine war, Sweden and Finland both submitted applications to join NATO last year. However, their bids for accession require the unanimous approval of all 30 NATO member states to be considered. Turkey is one of the two remaining countries to have not approved the applications, and they're trying to draw as many concessions as possible from the Scandinavian countries in exchange for approval on their ascension into NATO.
Turkey refusal to back Stockholm's accession has sparked a wave of anti-Turkish, anti-Muslim hate in Sweden, and the rally in question is the culmination of this debacle.
Paludan vows burning Quran weekly until Turkey approves Swedish bid
Earlier last month, Rasmus Paludan, the Swedish-Danish Hard Line party leader and renowned Quran-burner, vowed to burn the Quran in front of the Turkish embassy, on the Friday of every week, in a provocative act to pressure Ankara to support Stockholm's bid to join NATO.
Paludan, whose party operated on an anti-Islam platform and promised to restrict all non-Western immigration, depicted his acts as freedom of expression. Recently, Paludan's political repertoire has included burning and otherwise defacing copies of the holy Quran.
"I will proclaim that this is Erdogan's fault. Now that he doesn't want to let Sweden into NATO, I have to teach him about freedom of speech until he does. As I see it, Erdogan is a liar. When he says it's someone else's fault, he doesn't know how causality works," Paludan told Swedish news outlets.
Furthermore, the Danish leader planned to burn three copies of the holy Qurans in Copenhagen on Friday. Each copy will be burnt in a separate location. One will take place outside the Turkish embassy, another outside a mosque, and the third near the Russian embassy.
It is worth noting that in Denmark, unlike Sweden, Paludan does not require permission to carry out these acts, but must inform the authorities 24 hours in advance.
Paludan further pledged to "never in his entire life to burn a Quran in front of the Turkish embassy again" if Sweden gets admitted to NATO.
Read more: Turkish Foreign Ministry summons Norway envoy over Quran burning