Obama’s G20 and Turkey’s Trip
Barack Obama flew to Britain last night ahead of the G20 summit as his first step in his European whirlwind trip. Obama’s European trip includes appearances at the G20 summit in London (2 April), the Nato anniversary summit jointly hosted by France and Germany (3-4 April), and visits to the Czech Republic (4-5 April) and Turkey (6-7 April), Gideon Rachman at the Financial Times argues that Turkey will be Obama’s most important stop. “This is the one bit of the trip that it is very hard to script in advance – and the stakes are very high,” he explains. “Will Obama use his speech to the Turkish parliament to make the long-promised big statement on the relationship between the West and the Islamic world?”
Thousands of G-20 protesters jammed downtown London on Wednesday and some tried to storm the Bank of England, pelting police with eggs and fruit and rocking the barricades designed to control them. Demonstrators shouted “Abolish Money!” and clogged streets in the financial district known as “The City” even as Prime Minister Gordon Brown and President Barack Obama held a news conference elsewhere in the British capital.
Obama’s whirlwind trip is very significant for number of reasons, for Obama’s Turkey’s visit is followed by early pledges he made to improve U.S. relations in the Muslim world, giving his first formal interview as president to the al-Arabiya satellite channel.
Concerning the Turkey’s trip agenda, Recep Tayyip Erdogan said the Obama talks would focus on finding a resolution to the ongoing Middle East conflict, as well as the Turkish bid to join the European Union.
It is also worth mentioning the slight support the AKP received in Turkey’s March 29th local elections compared to previous huge support they received in 2007, the AKP had 40 percent of the vote, the Republican People’s Party 28, the Nationalist Action Party 14 and the Democratic Society Party 5.
The New York Times explains that Erdogan’s party winning by a smaller margin than in 2007 demonstrates dissatisfaction with the economy and allegations of widespread corruption among AKP members.
This might relatively be the case whereas it also demonstrates that when Islamic parties are given the chance to participate in the political arena they face different political, economical and social challenges, they make successful decisions and face downfalls as well, it also helps the Islamists improve their self-awareness and self-criticism performance and removes the nation’s fear that Islamic parties will not give way to different parties and opposition voices to participate in the political arena, the thing that AKP is succeeding in doing so far.
* Ikhwanweb Editorial Desk