Emirates Leaks has monitored a systematic campaign of incitement launched by the UAE and its media arms against Syrian refugees in Turkey.
The UAE’s inflammatory campaign aims to achieve political gains within Abu Dhabi’s years-long struggle over Turkey’s ruling Justice and Development Party.
Informed sources said that the UAE uses all available means to pressure the Justice and Development Party, led by Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan.
The sources pointed to the UAE’s open economic war on Turkey through campaigns to weaken the Turkish Lira to exploit this against Erdogan less than two years before the presidential elections.
The sources pointed out that the ruling circles in Turkey closely monitored systematic Emirati incitement to incite public opinion in Turkey against Erdogan.
The latest of these campaigns, according to the sources, is the escalation of incitement against Syrian refugees in Turkey and funding opposition leaders, as well as the intense media incitement.
Moves in Turkey against the Syrians
In recent weeks, the file of Syrian refugees in Turkey has returned to the top of the political, social and media agenda through a series of statements, incidents and campaigns on social media.
The recent escalation of the arrival of Afghan refugees to Turkey played a key factor in bringing the Syrian refugee file back to the fore, turning it into material for the escalating internal political tension.
This prompted a lot of political statements and a return to focus on the phenomena related to the daily life of refugees, becoming the first issue on social media and rich material for discussion that carried in it a lot of what was described as “hate speech.”
A few days ago, the Republican People’s Party leader, the largest Turkish opposition party, announced what he said was the party’s plan to return Syrian refugees to their country within less than two years of their accession to power.
Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan responded by pledging that he “will not throw the Syrian refugees into the arms of the killers (the Syrian regime)” as long as he is in power.
A member of the founding council of the opposition “Good” party, Eli Aksoy, who is known for her hostility to the Syrian presence in Turkey, tweeted that about 70% of Syrians are illiterate, considering that the high rate of illiteracy among Syrian refugees had a negative impact on the level of education in Turkey.
Three hashtags, described as inflammatory, topped the Turkish trend on Twitter, and thousands of accounts interacted through them, with users calling for the Syrians to be forced to return.
According to the Turkish government circles, what is going on in an externally supported media campaign is to inflame the street against the ruling Justice and Development Party, showing defensive positions on the Syrian refugees and their survival inside the country.
The Syrian refugee community in Turkey denounced the involvement of the UAE and its media arms in inciting them and exploiting them as a card for settling political scores without regard to their humanitarian situation.
The number of Syrian refugees residing in Turkey is 3,690,896, according to the statistics of the General Directorate of Migration Management in 2021.