Turkish drones ‘destabilising’ situation in Ukraine - Kremlin
Turkey’s Bayraktar TB2 armed drones being used in the conflict area in Ukraine has contributed to destabilisation in the region, Kremlin Press Secretary Dmitry Peskov told reporters on Wednesday.
“Our concerns that such weapons being provided to the Ukrainian army could cause destabilisation along the line of contact have been confirmed,” Sputnik Turkish cited Peskov as saying.
“We see that these weapons could potentially be used in this region in Ukraine if they are held by soldiers,” Peskov said, referring to the conflict in Donbass.
The Ukrainian General Staff confirmed the use of Turkish drones in operations in the conflict zone in a Facebook post. Bayraktar TB2s were used for the first time “with the purpose of combat” on Oct. 26, Ukraine’s Chief of General Staff Valeriy Zalujny said, according to Sputnik.
The drones were employed following the death of a Ukrainian soldier, and when the Ukrainian army’s demand for a ceasefire was “not realised”, Zalujny said. “The UAV did not leave the line of conflict, and its guided missiles destroyed one cannon, after which fire from the Ukrainian positions ended,” the army chief added.
Zalujny shared footage of the drone strike.
Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov also commented on the matter, saying Ankara was “arming the Kiev regime controlled by neo-Nazis”.
Lavrov warned against the outcomes of Ukraine’s possible inclusion to NATO, Russia expert Kerim Has said in a tweet.
Rus Dışişleri Bakanı Lavrov da Peskov’un uyarısını daha sert bir tonla devam ettirdi.— Kerim HAS (@Kerim_HAS) October 27, 2021
Ankara’nın “Neo-Nazilerin kontrolündeki Kiev rejimini silahlandırdığı” imasında bulunan Lavrov, Ukrayna’nın NATO’ya kabulü taraftarı olan tüm güçleri bu adımın olası sonuçları hakkında uyardı. pic.twitter.com/wIgHkubRS4
The Turkish-Ukrainian relationship should not be perceived as “an initiative against any third countries”, Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan had said in a joint press conference with his Ukrainian counterpart Vladimir Zelensky in April.
Poland is also interested in the Bayraktar TB2 drones, to the objection of Russia.