Bloody July 2016

Bloody July 2016

This year’s mid-summer has become outstanding not only due to its unusual heat, but is also untypically rich with political turmoil: in just five days, from Thursday July 14th to Sunday July 18th, the world was shaken by several tragic events, which shook the countries where they took place and reverberated throughout the international community.

Recall that on Friday night in the midst of the celebrations of Bastille Day in Nice a terrorist attack took place: Mohamed Lahouaiej-Bouhlel drove through a crowd of tourists with a heavy truck, leaving 84 corpses and hundreds of wounded behind him. The militant managed to drive into people for 2km before he was shot dead by police. Both France and the world were shocked by this heinous act of terror.

Twenty-four hours later, a coup d'etat was attempted in Turkey. A group of military conspirators, fearing disclosure, tried to seize power in the country, capturing or killing senior management. President Recep Tayyip Erdogan and Prime Minister Binali Yildirim succeeded in escaping from the hands of the rebels at the last moment, but many public buildings, including the parliament, were bombed and blockaded by tanks. 208 people were killed and thousands were injured during this short-term civil war. The president suppressed the coup and retained power, but Turkey's future remains uncertain.

A day after, on Sunday morning, the radical Armenian public organization ‘Constituent parliament' seized the police building in Yerevan's Erebuni district. Taking hostage several senior police officers, the ‘Sassoon braves’, as the rebels call themselves, began to demand the release of the coordinator of their organization, Zhirayr Sefilyan, arrested for illegal possession of weapons. At the same time, one of the officers was killed and several were injured. The authorities are continuing to negotiate, but the second terrorist attack in Armenia has had a negative impact on stability in the republic: the 'braves' are supported by more and more opposition movements.

A bloody crime against the authorities took place today in Almaty: a killer-recidivist penetrated the Almaty Regional Police Department, seized a gun and fired at police officers and fled in a car, shot and killed the driver and was later caught. Three police officers were killed.

As the director of the Institute of Caspian Cooperation Sergey Mikheyev noted in an interview to a correspondent of Vestnik Kavkaza, if there is a link between these events, then it is indirect.

The terrorist attack in Nice, which began the bloody chain of events in the world, was the most vivid manifestation of the work of the system of global terrorism. "Attempts to represent this terrorist in Nice as a lone maniac are failing. More and more evidence suggests that he was preparing a terrorist attack, that he had connections. The system used by terrorist organizations in Europe will be applied in the future. It is easier to do it in France, given, firstly, the large number of migrants; secondly, the historical specifics (the problems over Algeria and Tunisia), and thirdly, the weakness of the security services. A wave of terrorism can be expected. Whether it will grow or not is a question for the European secret services, but in a situation where all the security problems, in fact, have been entrusted to the Americans, it is quite difficult to prevent it,’’ the expert said.

Finally, Turkey has become a victim of President Recep Tayyip Erdogan’s mistakes in domestic and foreign policy. "Erdogan has started too risky game, which he cannot afford, he has spoiled relations with almost all his neighbors, although he started with the formula  ‘zero problems with neighbors’. The factor of the growing role of religion in the life of the secular state has influenced domestic policy, while the role of the army has been reducing, given the fact that the military forces have been engaged in military actions in 9 provinces of the country – a big problem personally for Erdogan, he has brought the country to this. Of course, it will be easy for him to blame some external forces for the putsch and not solve the existing problems, although they have become too heavy and deep, resulting in this coup. The military simply took advantage of a situation where Erdogan has rather complicated relations with all the external centers of power and he was out of the capital,’’ Sergey Mikheyev concluded.