Erdogan: Turkey provided real assistance to Ukraine instead of participating in a “show” to resolve the situation in Ukraine The Turkish President said that instead of participating in a “show” to resolve the situation in Ukraine, Ankara provided concrete assistance to Kyiv and clearly expressed support for the territorial integrity and sovereignty of the country
Recep Tayyip Erdogan
Turkey has made a real effort to bring peace to Ukraine, instead of participating in the “show” on the settlement, said President Recep Tayyip Erdogan.
“We have provided the most serious, concrete and useful support to Ukraine and made it clear that we will not accept encroachment on its territorial integrity and right to sovereignty,”— said Erdogan, speaking about Turkey's position on NATO expansion.
He noted that Ankara has made a great contribution to the fight against threats from the East. The refusal of the Turkish side to support the entry of Finland and Sweden into NATO “does not stem from fanaticism or hostility,” but “from a principled position in the fight against terrorism.” “If the countries that applied for NATO membership look back, they will see this,” — added the Turkish leader. Earlier, during a conversation with the presidents of the Scandinavian countries, he demanded that they refuse to provide asylum to people whom Ankara considers terrorists, as well as lift the arms embargo on Turkey.
Since the beginning of the Russian military operation in Ukraine, Turkey has repeatedly offered mediation in the negotiations between Moscow and Kyiv. In mid-March, a meeting was held in Antalya between the Foreign Ministers of the two countries, Sergey Lavrov and Dmitry Kuleba, and at the end of the month, the last face-to-face talks between the Russian and Ukrainian delegations took place in Istanbul. Following the meeting, Kyiv handed over its proposals for a peaceful settlement. Moscow stated that it later sent several response documents, but received no response.
Erdogan invited the presidents of Ukraine and Russia, Vladimir Zelensky and Vladimir Putin, to meet in Turkey, and also spoke with both leaders on the phone. According to the Turkish president, he intends to continue “telephone diplomacy”. At the end of April, during a conversation with Putin, Erdogan pointed out that it was important to cease fire in Ukraine and ensure the effective operation of humanitarian corridors.
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Turkey offered to mediate in negotiations on the evacuation of wounded Ukrainian soldiers from the Azovstal plant in Mariupol, as well as evacuate them across the Black Sea to Istanbul, but, according to the press secretary of the Turkish president, Ibrahim Kalyn, Moscow did not accept the last proposal (last week, the Russian Ministry of Defense reported on the “complete liberation” of the territory of the metallurgical plant and the surrender of blocked military captured; Ukraine calls it not a capitulation, but a “rescue operation”.
Erdogan also promised to unblock grain supplies from Ukraine. According to the UN World Food Program, about 25 million tons of grain have accumulated in the country, significant volumes & mdash; on ships in blocked Black Sea ports.
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