Somalia: Turkey’s ‘Moral’ Foreign Policy

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By Ismail Einashe

Somalilandsun -‘The tears that are now running from Somalia’s golden sands into the Indian Ocean must stop’ declared Recep Tayyip Erdoğan in 2011, following a highly charged visit to Mogadishu at the height of the 2011 Somali Famine.

The Turkish Prime Minister had arrived to a rock star’s welcome in the Somali capital – at every stop his motorcade was greeted by crowds shouting ‘Soo dhawoow Turkey’ (Welcome Turkey). Turkish flags adorned the city, and mothers promised to name their sons ‘Tayyip’ and their daughters ‘Istanbul’.

Erdoğan was the first non-African premier to visit Somalia in twenty years. His visit came just days after the Islamic militia al-Shabaab had been driven out of the capital by African Union forces. He had arrived with a large delegation that included his wife, daughters, cabinet ministers and pop stars. His wife, Emine Erdoğan, was photographed holding children with bloated bellies in refugee camps outside the capital. However sincere its motivations, the verbal and visual rhetorics of Erdoğan’s visit were minutely and expertly choreographed.

Read the full article Tears of Turkey’s Moral Foreign policy

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