02:42 GMT22 June 2021
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    Amid tensions triggered by Turkey’s announced plans to pursue its fossil fuel extraction survey in disputed eastern Mediterranean waters, France’s President Emmanuel Macron enraged Ankara last week when he suggested that the country "deserved something else", given the way President Recep Tayyip Erdogan's government was approaching foreign affairs.

    Turkey’s President Recep Tayyip Erdogan addressed a virtual meeting of the ruling Justice and Development Party (AK Party) on Thursday, taking the opportunity to once again lash out at France’s President Emmanual Macron, calling him an "incapable" President.

    Erdogan said Macron's logic in blaming Turkey for a spate of regional problems was flawed.

    "If Turkey withdraws from Syria, would Syria achieve peace? … If Turkey renounces everything, would France be rid of the mayhem provoked by the incapable and ambitious person who is heading France, and adopt a policy based on common sense?"

    ​Erdogan touted the “Turkey model” in dealing with outstanding issues.

    ​The Turkish President levelled yet another broadside at the French leader, saying that "Macron's time was almost up".

    Barbed Tit-For-Tat

    Erdogan and Macron have been trading insults for months on a diverse array of issues, with their feud most recently rooted in Turkey's maritime dispute with Greece.

    Paris sided with Athens in the Turkish-Greece dispute over exclusive rights to swathes of the eastern Mediterranean Sea in August, sending warships and jets to the disputed area after a Turkish surveying vessel started exploratory drilling for gas in an area between Cyprus and the Greek island of Crete.

    Recently, speaking ahead of a summit meeting of EU Mediterranean states, Emmanuel Macron called on the continent to adopt a “united and clear voice” in relation to Turkey.

    French President Emmanuel Macron arrives to give a press conference at Corsica's prefecture in Ajaccio, Corsica island, Thursday Sept.10, 2020
    © AP Photo / Ludovic Marin
    French President Emmanuel Macron arrives to give a press conference at Corsica's prefecture in Ajaccio, Corsica island, Thursday Sept.10, 2020

    The French President slammed Ankara on 10 September for “no longer [being] a partner in this region”, in a reference to its recent actions in the Eastern Mediterranean and its involvement in the Libyan civil war.

    “We Europeans need to be clear and firm with the government of President Erdogan which today is behaving in an unacceptable manner,” said Macron, adding that the EU “must be tough with the Turkish government and not with the Turkish people, who deserve more than the Erdogan government”.

    Enraged by the comments, Ankara retaliated with strongly-worded statements by the Turkish Foreign Ministry, that denounced Macron’s words as “arrogant,” suggesting they were a “reflection of his incompetence and despair”.

    The personal animosity between Macron and Erdogan spira;led after the French President deplored in November 2019 NATO's lack of response to a Turkish military offensive: Operation Peace Spring in northern Syria.

    Macron told The Economist that there was currently no security cooperation between Europe and the United States, essentially leaving NATO in a state of "brain death".

    The two countries have also found themselves on opposite sides of the Libya conflict, where Turkey backs the UN-recognised Government of National Accord (GNA) in Tripoli in the conflict against eastern Libya leader Khalifa Haftar.

    The GNA accuses France of supporting the Tobruk-based Libyan House of Representatives and the Libyan National Army (LNA), led by General Khalifa Haftar, which controls central and eastern Libya.


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    Mediterranean Sea, Greece, Recep Tayyip Erdogan, Turkey, turkey, Turkey, Macron, Emmanuel Macron, Tayyip Erdogan, Erdogan
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