Turkey blocks Russian flights to Syria — Analysis

Mevlut Cavusoglu, Turkey’s Foreign Minister, announced Saturday that Russia would not be allowed to fly into his country for flights heading towards Syria. Turkey, despite being a NATO member, has yet to sanction Russia for the Ukraine conflict. It is currently discussing airspace rights and Moscow in wider negotiations about Black Sea maritime rights.

We closed the airspace for Russian military aircraft and civilian planes flying to Syria to transport soldiers. Cavusoglu told reporters before departing for Uruguay. Before departing for Uruguay, Cavusoglu stated to reporters that Russia had granted permission in blocks of three months to fly troops through Turkish airspace. The most recent block expired this month.

“Henceforth the flights have stopped,”Cavusoglu also stated that Recep Tayyip Erdan, the Turkish President, had informed Vladimir Putin of his decision.

Turkey accuses NATO members over Ukraine

The Montreux Convention is an international agreement that regulates the maritime traffic within the Black Sea. He stated that negotiations around resumed flights will be part of the Montreux Convention. This agreement allows civilian ships to have unrestricted access, while allowing Turkey to bar military vessels from the Bosporus Straits and Dardanelles Straits during wartime.

Turkey invoked the convention to deny Russian warships access to the Black Sea following Moscow’s military offensive in Ukraine in February, but only restricted Russian ships whose home ports lay outside the Black Sea.

Turkey, although a NATO member, has not condemned Russia for the conflict in Ukraine. Ankara instead, which purchases gas from Russia and has some Russian weapons systems, has served as mediator between Moscow and Kiev. While negotiations aimed at resolving the conflict – including talks in Ankara last month – have thus far failed to deliver any positive results, Cavusoglu said on Saturday that backroom negotiations are still ongoing, and that “a draft joint declaration”Is in progress, and focuses on “impartiality, security and guarantees.”

Cavusoglu warned, however that Putin and Volodymyr Zelensky, the Ukrainian president, would need to take a final decision about the declaration. NATO is also being accused of pushing for the Turkish minister’s accusations. “the Ukraine war to continue”To weaken Russia.

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