Report: Turkey Becoming Major Transit Point for Latin American Cocaine – OCCRP

“Since the 1960s, Turkish traffickers have dominated the global heroin trade, establishing both deep corruption webs at home and a criminal tapestry of port contacts, logistics networks and distribution gangs across Europe,” the report said. “By the 1980s, this had consolidated into the so-called “Balkan Route”: a modern multi-branched Silk Road that transported opiates from Afghanistan and Iran, through the Turkish land mass and into Europe via the Balkans.

A second factor is their connections. After the Balkan route coalesced in the 80s, Turkish organized criminals came into contact with their Latin American equivalents, building a flourishing barter economy of heroin for cocaine.

Turkey: Cocaine Hub Between Europe and the Middle East – Insight Crime

In 2022, cocaine shipments heading to Turkey have been seized in Ecuador, West Africa, and Malta, as well as in Turkey itself.

Though the vast majority of this cocaine simply transits through Turkey, a growing minority now stays in the country, according to a 2019 EMCDDA report. The country’s domestic market saw a record expansion between 2007 and 2017, with drug seizures increasing tenfold during this time.

Secret report reveals Turkish gov’t imam, working as diplomatic attaché, spied in Lithuania – Nordic Monitor

The classified three-page report, sent by the Turkish Embassy in Vilnius to foreign ministry headquarters in Ankara, detailed how an imam from the Turkish government’s religious arm, the Diyanet, spied on residents and nationals of Lithuania. The report also exposed the Turkish Embassy’s efforts to infiltrate the small Muslim community in the Baltic nation on behalf of a foreign government.

The report, dated February 1, 2017 and stamped secret, was signed by Gülsun Erkul, then-deputy director general of consular affairs in the foreign ministry and currently serving as Turkish ambassador in the Latvian capital of Riga.

Turkish colonel who worked in intelligence planned to kill non-Muslims and non-Turks, wiretap reveals – Nordic Monitor

A retired colonel and frequent commentator on pro-government TV networks in Turkey advocated a view of killing non-Turks and non-Muslims in Turkey in a private phone conversation that was intercepted by investigators as part a probe into organized crime.

According to a transcript of the court-authorized wiretap obtained by Nordic Monitor, Col. Coşkun Başbuğ complained about the state of affairs in Turkey and criticized the rights given to minority communities, including Jews, in

‘I’m not joking,’ Erdogan warns Greece — RT World News

“Turkey won’t renounce its rights in the Aegean and won’t back down from using rights that are established by international agreements when it comes to arming islands,” Erdogan insisted.

The Efes-2022 drills have been underway near Izmir since May 20. More than 10,000 troops from Turkey and 37 other countries have taken part in them. 

US-Backed Kurdish-Led Forces Say Ready to Coordinate With Syrian Army Against Turkey – VOA

Any Turkish operation would attack the Kurdish YPG militia, a key part of the U.S.-backed Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF) that controls large parts of north Syria and is regarded by Washington as an important ally against Islamic State. Ankara sees it as a terrorist group and extension of the militant Kurdistan Workers Party (PKK).

A spokesman for the Turkey-backed Syrian National Army (SNA) said Russia was reinforcing positions near Tal Rifaat, Manbij, the southern outskirts of Kobani, and Ain Issa – all towns within 40 kilometers of the Turkish border.

“Since the announcement of the operation, the Syrian regime and its Iranian militias have mobilized and [are] sending reinforcements to the YPG,” Major Youssef Hammoud told Reuters.

Reality check: Seven ‘bad news’ for Turkey’s naive appeasers | Ahval

Above all, the regime in Ankara has violated the constitution and the existing domestic and international laws so many times that it does not have the luxury of losing the elections and simply handing power to its successor. Recep Tayyip Erdoğan and his proxies could face multiple life sentences.

Thus the regime has a multilayer strategy to win the elections.