Turkey falls victim to terrorism due to double-standard policy



Two deadly blasts rocking the Turkish capital of Ankara last saturday are a reminder that a country pursuing a double-standard policy on terrorism will eventually make itself a victim of terror attacks.

Nearly 100 people were killed and almost 250 others wounded in Saturday's explosions, which targeted a peace rally at the central railway station in the city.

The terrorist attacks have drawn widespread condemnation of the international community.

In a message to his Turkish counterpart, Recep Tayyip Erdogan, Chinese President Xi Jinping said China opposes terrorism in any form and strongly condemns such terrorist attacks aimed at civilians.

While receiving condolences over the "heinous attacks," Erdogan was accused by thousands of Turkish people mourning the dead of stirring nationalist sentiment by his pursuit of a military campaign against Kurdish militants, a charge Ankara vehemently rejected.

Leonid Kalashnikov, deputy head of the Russian State Duma's foreign affairs committee, also said the attack might well be related to Turkey's stance on the Syrian crisis.

With its mind bent on toppling the government of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad, the Turkish government has opened its borders to the Syrian opposition rebels and offered them assistance including weapons, most of which ended up in the hands of the Islamic State (IS) terrorist group.

Turkey has been participating in the U.S.-led campaign against the IS in Syria while battling with the outlawed Kurdish Workers' Party (PKK) at the same time since July.

However, as the national election looms, Erdogan has directed most attacks against PKK militants rather than the IS to bolster the political standing of the ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP).

Anger towards Erdogan over Turkey's worst-ever terrorist attacks intensified as the attacks came less than three months after a suicide bombing blamed on the IS in the town of Suruc, on the Syrian border, killed 33 people. It also targeted peace activists.

The Suruc bombing has caused one of the worst flare-ups in Turkey in recent times as the PKK accused the government of collaborating with the IS and resumed attacks on the security forces after an over two-year truce.

"Turkey is combatting terrorism with double standards," said Zhu Weilie, director of the Middle East Studies Institute at the Shanghai International Studies University.

"Turkey harbors a very complicated attitude towards fighting terrorism. On the surface it looks like it's attacking the IS, but in reality it's preventing the Kurdish militants from growing stronger," he said.

Devlet Bahceli, leader of a far-right nationalist party that placed third in Turkey's June elections, blamed both Erdogan and the Kurds.

"Turkey is paying the price of the AKP's sympathetic and warm approach to terror," Bahceli said.

Turkey is vulnerable to infiltration by the IS, which holds swathes of Syrian land abutting Turkey where some 2 million refugees live. As a developing country, Turkey would suffer more than such developed nations as the United States if terror occurs.

The Turkish government has to bear in mind that those who practice double standards against terrorist attacks and organizations are sowing the seeds for terrorism, and will finally end up hurting themselves by doing so.

It is imperative that Turkey reconsider its double-standard policy on the fight against terrorism and collaborate extensively with all parties concerned, rather than only with Western countries. Enditem