The EU in the Syria Dilemma


The situation in Syria, the Turkish invasion blurrier. The EU is afraid of a new terrorist, but has no uniform policy and little impact. From Brussels Bernd reported Riegert.

After the beginning of the Turkish military offensive in the Kurdish regions in the North-East of Syria, the tips of the European Union held back initially with official Statements. So the EU is not notified to notified foreign policy chief, Federica Mogherini, as yet, self-word.

Hours after the beginning of the after the air of the Turkey attacks on the area, urged then President of the EU Commission Jean-Claude Juncker in Ankara to demand an immediate stop of the Offensive on. “These military actions will not lead to a good result,” said Juncker in front of the EU Parliament. He also warned Turkey against the belief that the EU could support plans for a possible “security zone” in Northern Syria. Ankara should not expect that the European Union is going to pay for anything, said Juncker and threatened indirectly with a stop of payments to the EU, which Turkey currently receives for captured Syrian refugees.

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Syrian Kurds feel betrayed

The current plans by Ankara to expel the Kurdish militants from the Syrian border region. In a so-called “safety zone”, where Syrian refugees are settled, currently living in Turkey and Europe. Turkey has taken since the beginning of the civil war in the neighboring country of Syria, around 3.6 million refugees.

“No common policy of the EU”

The EU has tried in the past eight years, the humanitarian consequences of the war in Syria alleviate, and in the search for a political solution to the conflict cooperate with the United Nations. To a military Intervention on the ground, the Europeans but to the dismay of the United States is not prepared to drop. Only France and the United Kingdom flew air strikes on positions of the radical Islamic terrorist militia IS in Syria.


Although the EU has foreign policy chief Mogherini that the EU organized three donor conferences for Syria and around eleven billion euros in humanitarian assistance has been spent. Nevertheless, you could not talk in the case of Syria, of a truly common foreign policy of the EU, writes Jasmine El-Gamal of the think-tank “Atlantic Council” in Brussels. “There is a need for a consistent and coherent Syria policy of the EU, but there is no. We always talk about what should the EU do. But if you look at the member States individually, we see that there are very different approaches. The more combative, the other just wants to wait and see. How should the Regime of Syrian ruler Assad deal about it there is no Unity. On the issues of Return of IS fighters, or dealing with refugees from each EU member has a different opinion.”

If the most important States were not in agreement on how far they wanted to engage in Syria, Jasmine El-Gamal, the threat is the danger that Europe’s voice is of no consequence whatsoever.

Federica Mogherini: The EU-States do not follow uniform policy on Syria

Refugee deal with Turkey is a priority

At this point, the foreign policy expert of the conservative group in the European Parliament, Michael Gahler, the EU already arrived looks. For years, the Europeans in Syria had been conflict away, complained Michael Gahler in the Germany radio. “As a result, we are now outside of any direct influence,” said Gahler. Even the influence of the European Union to Turkey, which is still officially a candidate for accession, is extremely limited. Reminders to Recep Tayyip Erdogan against the Kurdish militias in Northern Syria, suggested the Turkish President in the Wind. The EU needs Turkey for the three years ago, negotiated a Deal to prevent refugees from Crossing into Greece. President Erdogan has repeatedly threatened to send more refugees, does not meet the EU financial part of the deal. Federal interior Minister Horst Seehofer (CSU) warned on Monday of a new wave of refugees could make their way into the EU, if the situation escalated in Syria. The EU had to be prepared with a uniform asylum and migration policy, demanded that Seehofer. He acknowledged, however, that in the meantime “thick boards have to be drilled.”

New Terror Threats?

Julien Barnes-Dacey, European Council on Foreign Relations

So far, the Kurdish militias have kept the prisoner of the fighters of the so-called “Islamic state” (IS) under control, after they had defeated the terror militia by military means. Turkish President Erdogan has insured US President Donald Trump, the Turkey would take on this responsibility now. But this assurance of the Syria expert Julien Barnes-Dacey from the “European Council on Foreign Relations” in Brussels does not believe. “You have to be honest and see that the Europeans were not ready to take care of the Return of IS fighters. The Americans have exercised some of the time pressure on the Europeans, their nationals back. The Europeans have refused,” said Barnes-Dacey of the DW. The question now is whether President Erdogan is really willing and able to prevent a resurgence of the IS-terror. “There are many doubts, when you consider that he wants to take care of mainly the Kurds,” says Julien Barnes-Dacey.

Protests against the invasion: Kurdish women in Syria on Tuesday

EU rejects diplomatic settlement

The goal of President Erdogan, in Syria after the military strike “protection zones” for re-settlement of refugees to set up, rejected the EU in September. The foreign envoy Federica Mogherini said at a conference on Syria in Brussels, it is the unbenommene right of the refugees to return home. “But you can’t go back the force people to. The conditions for safe, voluntary return in Dignity must be given,” said Mogherini. To threaten to “many Syrians arbitrary detention, and forced military service if they return home. Many seized the entire property.”

The future of EU-commissioned the outside, the former Spanish foreign detachment Minister, Josep Borrell, of Federica Mogherini, at the beginning of November, said in front of the EU Parliament, the European Union must finally learn to speak in a “voice of Power”. What it could mean in relation to the conflict in Syria, he left it open. Borrell criticized that the US had allowed Turkey to hasty in to invade Syria.