ANKARA: Italian war correspondent, activist and award-winning author Francesca Borri and Bosnian journalist and analyst Mirnes Kovac spoke to Anadolu Agency in Ankara on Tuesday after a panel of international journalists, where the US recognition of Jerusalem as the Israeli capital was the main topic of discussion.
Borri and Kovac shared their opinions on recent developments in Jerusalem, the region, and the transformation of the UN.
“The UN disappeared in the world’s most recent conflicts. It doesn’t have any impact at all. That’s why Turkey and its leader’s voice are important. As I have always believed, the world is bigger than five,” Borri said, adding that the western world, despite that, still believed that it owned the entire world.
‘The world is bigger than five’
Borri noted that Turkey and its president Recep Tayyip Erdogan had things to say about the injustices in the world, and the reason European leaders did not like him and his country was that he criticised the UN and the current world order everywhere he could.
“But for the transformation of the world order and [re]forming the UN, Turkey is alone. When you look at the Muslim world, they all have problems. Turkey has become a powerful and important player on the international scene in recent years. Turkey is an economic and political giant now,” she said.
The famous Italian journalist underlined that the world had to smarten up and could not wait for the US or other powerful countries to transform the UN.
“We can’t expect that… We can’t wait for the US to change its policy; it’s not going to work. We should find different alliances to do that. To get support from European civil society or maybe American civil society might be helpful,” she said, adding that waiting for politicians or governments to bring about a real change and transformation in the UN was tantamount to waiting for nothing.
She also touched on Turkey being possessed of much greater energy and creativity and its people having greater courage and faith in the future. “Sometimes you don’t realise how powerful you are,” she said.
Borri went on to say she was asked by her readers whether she was afraid to live in Syria or Palestine, and she answered in the negative.
“What I’m afraid of is western governments. For money and power, European governments can do just about anything,” she stressed.
“When there was a coup in Egypt, western journalists didn’t use the term, ‘coup’. There was a coup attempt in Turkey; they said ‘ooo this is not a coup; Erdogan fabricated it’. When it comes to Sisi, they say, ‘it is a revolution’. Come on; this is not journalism!”
‘US: a falling empire’
Mirnes Kovac, a Bosnian journalist and analyst, pointed out that Jerusalem was badly poisoned by the filth of political violence that had descended on this blessed city since the departure of the Ottomans.
Discussing the recent developments in the region, he said, “It is obvious that the current US administration does not have a policy for the Middle East. When I look at the U.S., I see the fall of an empire. Once the world saw that the US as a creator of a liberal and free world. Now it’s scrambling.”
Kovac emphasised that the issue of Jerusalem was too risky to be left to politicians, and doing so would not only incite violence but also destroy the prospects of any viable political solution for peace in the Middle East.
He said, although some Muslim countries were in fear and troubles, no Muslim would accept this betrayal regardless of its cost.
“In the case of Palestine,” Kovac said, “the problem is as old as the UN. It hasn’t been solved. There is a problem with the UN and its perceptions.”
“The UN organisation can be transformed. I hope it will happen. At least we now have a better situation than before. Turkey is stronger and a key player in the region and the world. Nothing can be done without Turkey in the Middle East. It’s a well-known fact in Europe and the US,” Kovac said, additionally expressing faith that Turkey was destined to be one of the greatest hopes of Muslim nations.
He finished the interview with the words of Alija Izetbegovic, Bosnia-Herzegovina’s founder and first president: “When everything is over, we will not remember the words of our enemies but rather the silence of our brothers.”