Turkey assures support to Ukraine over Crimea

Kiev, Aug 21 (IANS) Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan has assured his Ukrainian counterpart Petro Poroshenko that he would not recognise Crimea’s annexation by Russia, the Ukrainian presidency said,

Erdogan assured Poroshenko over the phone on Saturday that despite Turkey and Russia’s improving relations he would not recognise the annexation, Efe news reported.

“Erdogan confirmed that Turkey’s support for Ukraine’s territorial integrity is invariable,” the statement on Saturday said, insisting that Ankara would also unfailingly continue to back the Tatars in Crimea.

Since Russia’s annexation of the peninsula, Erdogan, who backed Ukraine in the conflict, had frequently denounced the persecution of the Tatar minority by local authorities.

Russian President Vladimir Putin arrived in Crimea on Friday, days after he accused Ukrainian military troops of attempting to infiltrate Crimean territory.

The United Nations Human Rights Commission estimated that nearly 10,000 people have been killed in the conflict area in eastern Ukraine since 2014.



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