How the Turkey-UAE Rivalry is remaking the Middle East

How can the EU prevent the Turkey-UAE rivalry from destabilising European security and foreign policy?

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Despite the asymmetry in their size, population, and military prowess, Turkey and the United Arab Emirates (UAE) have been engaged in a decade-long rivalry. This confrontation is not only feeding regional instability but is also deepening Europe’s divisions, making it more difficult for the European Union and its member states to develop a cohesive policy on the Mediterranean. This week, host Mark Leonard talks to Asli Aydıntaşbaş, ECFR´s Turkey expert, Cinzia Bianco, visiting fellow working on the Arabian Peninsula and Gulf region, as well as Julien Barnes-Dacey, director of the Middle East and North Africa programme at ECFR. Together, they examine the origins of the rivalry, its impacts on the EU, as well as the arenas in which the rivalry outplays. Finally, they try to answer a most critical question: How can the EU prevent the Turkey-UAE rivalry from destabilising European security and foreign policy?

This podcast was recorded on 31 March 2021. 

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Cover image:
Abu Dhabi’s Crown Prince Sheikh Mohammed bin Zayed Al Nahyan is welcomed by Recep Tayyip Erdogan as he arrives for a meeting in Ankara in 2012
Image by REUTERS/Umit Bektas

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