Moscow-Ankara ties ‘should not’ trigger sanctions against Turkey, Kremlin says

The Kremlin has dismissed the likelihood that Ankara will be slapped with secondary sanctions by the West over its increasing cooperation with Moscow, Russian state-owned TASS news agency reported on Monday.

Turkey’s expanding ties with Russia “cannot and should not be a trigger for any secondary sanctions," it cited Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov as saying in remarks on publications about possible consequences of the West’s concerns about expanding cooperation between the two countries.

Citing six Western officials, The Financial Times on Saturday reported that Western states were increasingly concerned over intensifying economic ties between Turkey and Russia, warning of the mounting risk of Ankara facing potential punitive retaliation if it assists Moscow in avoiding sanctions.

The report arrived a day after a meeting between Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan and Russian President Vladimir Putin in Sochi, where the two leaders pledged to boost political and economic cooperation including in energy and trade. The pair also agreed to switch part of payments for Russian gas to the rouble currency.

Peskov added that "the United States and EU countries, Brussels may be expected to continue pursuing their policy of putting an unprecedented pressure on any countries reluctant to follow their mainstream."

The Russian economy has been hard hit by sanctions and the exit of international business since the country invaded Ukraine in February.

But the country has still managed to pull in $24 billion in energy exports the first three months of war alone, according to Business Insider, and has been limiting supply to Western nations to drive up energy prices, tipping economies in Europe close to a recession.


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