Erdoğan says Russian attack on Ukraine unacceptable

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan on Feb. 24 said that Russia's military operation against Ukraine was “unacceptable” and that Turkey “rejects” it.

Reuters - Duvar English 

Turkey supports Ukraine's battle for territorial integrity and views Russia's attack as a "heavy blow" to regional stability and peace, President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan said on Feb. 24, repeating a call for a resolution of the crisis through dialogue.

"I would like to say that we find Russia's military operation against Ukraine unacceptable and that we reject it," he said. 

"This step, which we view as against international law, is a heavy blow struck on regional peace, harmony and stability," he said, adding that he conveyed Turkey's support to Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskiy in a phone call on Feb. 24. 

He said Turkey, which has a maritime border with both Ukraine and Russia in the Black Sea, viewed both countries as friendly, and added he was "sincerely saddened" that Moscow and Kyiv were in conflict.

Earlier on Feb. 24, the Turkish Foreign Ministry said that Russia's military operation was unacceptable, calling on Moscow to immediately end the "unjust and unlawful" move that threatens global security.

"Beyond eliminating the Minsk agreements, this attack is a grave violation of international law and poses a serious threat to the security of our region and the world," the ministry said in a statement. "We call on the Russian Federation to immediately end this unjust and unlawful act."

Earlier, Ukraine's ambassador to Ankara said Kyiv had asked Turkey to close Black Sea waterways to Russian ships and to show solidarity with Ukraine. The call put Turkey, which has good ties with both of them, in a difficult position.