The issue of the protocol of insult that European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen was subjected to during her visit to Turkey last week sparked a new diplomatic crisis between Brussels and Ankara, the dimensions of which have greatly exacerbated with the continuing European and international reactions condemning what happened and directing an avalanche of sharp criticism of the President of the Turkish regime, Rajab. Tayyip Erdogan.
What happened during Erdogan's meeting with the President of the European Council, Charles Michel and Von der Leyen, known as the "sofa scandal", after the latter found itself standing because of the lack of chairs, turned into a state of political tension that continued to interact this week also amid a wave of criticism among European diplomatic circles at the highest levels. France's stance was most pronounced, describing what happened as an “insult on the part of Turkey”, rejecting the hypothesis of a “protocol error”.
French Minister of European Affairs Clement Bonn stressed in a statement carried by the media that what he called "re-placing the points on the letters", indicating that the problem in this case "is not Europe but Turkey, which misbehaved."
Bon drew attention to the "aggressive" position taken by the Turkish regime towards Europe and said, “It is a deliberate Turkish problem, I think, towards us .. There was a trap between the one who set out the plot and the person who fell into it, and it is preferable to place the blame on the one who committed it.”
The problem, according to Bonn, is “a lack of respect for democracy and authoritarian deviation in Turkey,” considering that the Europeans should be “very firm with the Turks,” calling at the same time for the European Union to present a unified opinion and decision in the international arena.
The German newspaper Feld commented on the “sofa scandal” in a tweet on Twitter, in which it said: “No, it was not a coincidence ... it was a deliberate act.” She asked why Michel remained silent about what happened .. The response to the newspaper came from Michel, who commented on The embarrassing situation, he told the German newspaper Handelsblatt: "I do not hide a secret that I do not sleep well at night because of the time the scene does not leave my head and I wish that time went back to fix the matter."
Von der Leyen warned Michel in their first meeting since the "sofa" incident that "it will not allow what happened to be repeated," so that Michel repeats his "deep regret for the incident" that prompted thousands of Europeans to sign a petition calling for him to resign.
The scandal, which deepened the differences between the Turkish regime and the European Union, met with angry echoes and sharp reactions from the Europeans, including Luxembourg Foreign Minister Jean Asselborn, who emphasized that the European Union should not commit to modernizing the customs union and the system for granting visas to the Turks if President Recep Tayyip Erdogan continues to “deviate” Authoritarian “As for Italian Prime Minister Mario Draghi, he described Erdogan as a“ dictator, ”while major political blocs in the European Parliament expressed their anger at the protocol insult after circulating photos and videos of Von der Leyen in a state of daze and embarrassment after discovering that there is no seat reserved for her alongside everyone Erdogan and Michel.
The crisis of the diplomatic couch is added to its predecessors of crises between Erdogan and Europe, from blackmailing the head of the repeated Turkish regime of the European Union in the file of migrants to the operations of suppressing and pursuing opponents of his policies outside Turkey's borders and in the European house, to the espionage operations carried out by his intelligence forces in several European countries, on top Germany, and last but not least, his continuous provocations in the eastern Mediterranean region, where his ambitions to seize oil and gas in that region pushed him to the brink of igniting a war with Greece.