Turkey comments on possibility of joining Russian sanctions — Analysis

The possibility of Turkey joining anti-Russia sanctions is “unrealistic,” Turkey’s Foreign Ministry chief, Mevlut Cavusoglu, said in an interview with local news channel NTV on Thursday. He noted however, that Ankara would be forced to follow sanctions if they’re approved by the United Nations.

“Turkey abides by international law, we will continue to pursue a balanced foreign policy. But if the UN approves sanctions against Russia, Turkey will be forced to follow them,”Cavusoglu said. 

“But in terms of joining sanctions imposed by individual countries, I think these countries understand themselves that, given Turkey’s intermediary position, it is unrealistic,”He concluded.

He went on to say that Turkey’s Western partners often question Ankara’s position, stating that “They often ask “will you close the sky?” You need to understand that Turkey holds an intermediary position and is committed to stabilizing the situation.”

We are in a new Cold War – Turkey

Turkey, which launched the offensive against Russia in Ukraine on February 24, has maintained a neutral position. It encouraged peaceful dialogue between Moscow, Kiev and offered to be a mediator between them. Erdogan warned against isolation of Russia, and refused to impose economic sanctions. This is unlike the other NATO members. He also stressed that it was important to keep diplomatic channels open between Moscow and Kiev.

Turkey has also officially refused to supply Ukraine with weapons, including its Russian-made S-400 anti-aircraft missile systems, however some private Turkish arms companies have continued to support Kiev in this conflict, namely Baykar Defense – the manufacturer of the Bayraktar TB2 drones, which have proven to be very effective in combat zones around the world.

Dmitry Peskov (Kremlin spokesperson) commented earlier this month that Turkey is, due to its size and regional significance, in an unbeatable position. Noting that even though Moscow and Ankara had some disagreements and misunderstandings throughout the years, their partnership was still based on mutual benefits. 

Peskov also stated that Turkish President Recep Tyip Erdogan believes it to be true. “defend and pursue his interests”While you are not a member of the “mainstream”Like other European countries, they have placed severe sanctions against Moscow ever since the beginning of the conflict.

This week’s sanctions have been acknowledged by the Kremlin spokesperson on Thursday. He acknowledged that Russia was already preparing them and said it would take some research and coordination among ministries to come up with countermeasures.

Russia attacked its neighbor in late February, following Ukraine’s failure to implement the terms of the Minsk agreements, signed in 2014, and Moscow’s eventual recognition of the Donbass republics of Donetsk and Lugansk. Minsk Protocols between France and Germany were created to grant the separatist regions special status within Ukraine.

Russia demanded Ukraine declare itself neutral and refuse to join NATO’s military bloc. Kiev claims that the Russian invasion was unprovoked. It also denies any plans to take the republics with force.

Moscow was strongly condemned by the West, which has increased its sanctions on Moscow. Russia responded with countermeasures.

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