Turkish Defense Minister, Hulusi Akbar on Friday said his country will do its best to de-escalate tensions between Russia and Ukraine, terming the continuation of dialogue and diplomacy the best approach to end the crisis.
“We are following development in Ukraine with concern,” Akbar said in a press briefing after a NATO meeting in Brussels. Akbar lamented that the region is going through a sensitive and critical period.
“A meeting with NATO defense ministers was held for two days and besides other issues, we especially talked over Ukraine,” Akbar said, adding both regional and global developments were evaluated during the meeting.
“The territorial integrity and sovereignty of both Georgia and Ukraine are important to us. As our President “Recep Tayyip Erdogan” has stated, we, as Turkey, have done our best to defuse the tension and we continue to do so,” Akbar added.
Akbar said that Turkey is against the occupation of Crimea. “Our position is very clear. We are against the Ukrainian occupation and we support the country’s territorial integrity.”
“We are in favor of solving the tension in the region with a common good and balanced approach, and in this sense, it is our sincere wish that the countries bordering the Black Sea live in peace, dialogue, tranquility, and prosperity,” Akbar added.
On Wednesday, Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu had held separate phone calls with his Russian and Ukrainian counterparts, where he assured them of Ankara’s readiness to host a meeting between them to help de-escalate tensions.
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