Lavrov: Turkey is not Russia’s strategic ally
Russia does not and has never considered Turkey a strategic ally, said Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov in an interview with Russian radio stations.
According to him, Russia does not share Turkey's view on the possibility of a military solution to the conflict in Nagorno-Karabakh and considers the presence of Turkey’s troops in Syria illegitimate.
"We have never looked at Turkey as our strategic ally, it is a partner, very close partner. On many fronts, this partnership is strategic, and indeed we are working in Syria, we are trying to help resolve the Libyan crisis. Turkey also seeks to promote its interests in the region," the Foreign Minister said.
According to Lavrov, the partnership between Turkey, Russia and Iran has an important role in the Syrian settlement, as it has allowed to reduce the territories ruled by terrorists, but Moscow does not agree with the position on the possibility of a military solution to the conflict in Nagorno-Karabakh, which was voiced by Turkish officials.
"We still defend our view that a peaceful settlement is not only possible, it is the only way to ensure a sustainable solution to this problem, because everything else will keep the conflict somewhat muted. If there is no long-term political agreement, there will still be no military solution, and the fighting will still continue," the Russian Foreign Minister explained.
Russian President Vladimir Putin said that Turkey became a strategic partner of Russia in July 2019. He referred to joint energy projects, such as the Akkuyu nuclear power plant and the Turkish Stream gas pipeline, as well as "coordinated efforts" to achieve international stability.
"The partnership with our neighbor Turkey has reached a strategic level, we are in constant contact with President Recep Tayyip Erdogan," Putin said.