Erdoğan: I have a ‘special relationship’ with Putin — and it’s only growing

Recep Tayyip Erdogan ♥ Vladimir Putin.

The country̵7;s president has insisted a week before he faces voters in a tense runoff election that Turkey will defy pressure from the West and continue to strengthen political and economic ties with Moscow despite a full-scale invasion of Ukraine. .

“Russia and Turkey need each other in every possible field,” Erdoğan said. CNN Russia’s president is getting deeper, stressing his own “special relationship” with Putin in an interview aired on Friday.

“The West is not leading a very balanced approach – you need a balanced approach towards a country like Russia,” Erdogan said. “We are not at the point where we will impose sanctions on Russia like the West.”

Despite the membership of the NATO country, Ankara has advanced our economic ties Imports of cheap Russian oil by other European countries, along with Moscow, increased since the start of the war.

while delivering humanitarian aid to Ukraine and its domestically beraktar attacked droneTurkey has positioned itself as a neutral party in the conflict, hosting a series of talks between the two sides.

Erdoğan has also played his role as a broker recently updated The Black Sea grain deal that has allowed supplies from blocked ports in Ukraine to reach the global market. one in speech On Wednesday, he trumpeted the success of the deal, describing Putin as a “dear friend”.

The issue of Russia has come to the fore in Turkey’s presidential elections after Kemal Kilikdaroglu, Erdogan’s moderate democratic challenger, was killed last week. accused Moscow Conspiracies hatched to turn voters against him and involvement in deep forgery.

Since neither candidate got the required majority to win the outright election last Sunday, the two will once again face-off next weekend. However, with Erdoğan receiving more than 49 percent of the vote, Kılıçdaroğlu faces an uphill battle to turn the tables on two decades in power.

In his interview with CNN, Erdogan indicated that he is unlikely to change his foreign policy stance if he wins a new term, adding that his opposition to Sweden’s NATO membership application will continue.

“We are not ready for Sweden yet,” he claimed, “because a NATO country must have a strong stance when it comes to fighting terrorism.”

Ankara has repeatedly accused Stockholm of turning a blind eye to members of banned Kurdish groups living in exile in the country. demanding Stockholm extradited dozens of “terrorists” back to Turkey as part of an agreement on its admission to the transatlantic military alliance.