Turkey gears up diplomacy with allies amid ongoing Ukraine crisis
President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan held a phone conversation with French President Emmanuel Macron late Feb. 24 to discuss Russia’s military operation in Ukraine and the latest developments. Macron is the European Union’s term president.
The talk came a day before the NATO leaders met at an extraordinary virtual meeting.
Turkey’s foreign and defense ministers also conducted separate diplomatic activities and contacts with their counterparts. Foreign Minister Mevlüt Çavuşoğlu spoke with United States Secretary of State Antony Blinken and Ukraine’s Foreign Minister Dmytro Kuleba.
“Secretary Blinken thanked Turkey for its strong and vocal support in defense of Ukraine’s sovereignty and territorial integrity,” read a statement issued by the U.S. State Department early Feb. 25. The two men discussed the recent developments in Ukraine following the Russian operation.
In his conversation with Kuleba, Çavuşoğlu reportedly expressed Turkey’s rejection of the Russian invasion of Ukraine and Ankara’s continued support to Ukraine’s territorial integrity and political unity.
Defense Minister Hulusi Akar had a phone conversation with U.S. Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin and Ukraine’s Defense Minister Oleksii Reznikov. A brief statement following the conversation between Turkish and American defense ministers said, “they discussed and evaluated the latest developments in Ukraine as well as bilateral and regional defense and security issues.”