ArmInfo. I regard the support recently expressed by Turkish President Erdogan to his Ukrainian counterpart Vladimir Zelensky as another confirmation of his intentions and evidence of Russia's geopolitical encirclement. A similar opinion was expressed to ArmInfo by political scientist Arkady Dubnov.
Following last month's three-hour talks between Erdogan and Zelensky in Istanbul, the Turkish president supported the prospects for Ukraine's membership in NATO, expressing his readiness to provide any assistance. Erdogan also promised that he would never recognize the annexation of Crimea, supporting the "Crimean Platform" with which Kiev plans to unite the efforts of the world community around the issue of the peninsula's ownership. The joint declaration signed after the talks consists of 20 points and is aimed at further strengthening relations between Kiev and Ankara.
The political scientist primarily links such pronounced support of Erdogan to Ukraine with the observed escalation of tension in the south-east of Ukraine. According to him, having demonstrated last fall that it is not going to concede to Russia in the South Caucasus, today Erdogan has clearly demonstrated to Putin that Turkey is a serious geopolitical player both in the south of Europe and in the Black Sea-Caspian basin. According to the political scientist, Erdogan's Istanbul statements are part of his desire to demonstrate and present his country as the largest regional power. In this light, Dubnov recalled that Turkey has recently once again demonstrated its importance as the owner of the Black Sea Straits, allowing NATO warships to enter the Black Sea. And very soon, two more American warships should pass through the Bosphorus. Another important article of Turkish support for Ukraine and Kiev's plans for the south-east, the political scientist considers the supply of Turkish Bayraktar TB2 drones to Ukraine. Dubnov attaches importance to these deliveries, taking into account the effectiveness demonstrated by the UAV data during the same last year's war in Karabakh. The manufacturer has already confirmed the sale of "bayraktars" to Ukraine, whose aircraft have already used the novelty in the south-east of the country.
Moscow, in Dubnov's opinion, has so far responded to this whole set of steps by Ankara with another response "in the spirit of Onishchenko". According to Russian media, already today, on April 12, "due to the sharp aggravation of the situation with the coronavirus," a decision is expected to be made on limiting air traffic with Turkey for a month. According to the Russian political scientist, the same decisions to restrict tourism to Turkey, as well as periodic bans on the import of the same Azerbaijani tomatoes, are never taken solely for the purpose of caring for the health of Russians. And they are usually always based on political motivation.