19 Nov 2021 19:28

Lavrov urges Cavusoglu to take Russia's concerns about Turkish-Ukrainian military-technical cooperation most seriously

MOSCOW. Nov 19 (Interfax) - Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov and Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavosuglu talked on the phone on Friday to discuss the situation in the region, focusing particularly on Ukraine.

"As was stressed by the Russian side, Kyiv's course toward an escalation of tensions in the southeastern part of the country encouraged by Western partners is fraught with a dangerous destabilization of the situation. We called for taking our concerns regarding Turkish-Ukrainian military-technical collaboration, which, inter alia, promotes Ukraine's further militarization, as seriously as possible," the Russian Foreign Ministry said.

"The parties also addressed other aspects of the international agenda, including the situation in the South Caucasus and the Balkans. They considered current matters pertaining to bilateral relations and the schedule of upcoming Russian-Turkish contacts at the top and high levels," the Foreign Ministry said.

The conversation was proposed by Turkey, the ministry said.

The Ukrainian Armed Forces used a Bayraktar drone bought from Turkey in Donbas for the first time on October 26. Ukrainian Defense Minister Oleksiy Reznikov said on November 12 that the Defense Ministry would buy a new shipment of Bayraktar drones from Turkey for the Ukrainian Armed Forces in 2022.

Moscow has said that the use of Bayraktar drones by Ukrainian forces in Donbas confirms Russia's worries that the deliveries of such weapons to Kyiv is likely to destabilize the situation in the southeastern part of Ukraine.

"We really have good relations with Turkey, but unfortunately, in this particular case, our fears that the delivery of such weapons to the Ukrainian military could potentially lead to destabilization on the contact line have come true," Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov told reporters on October 27.