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Moscow urges Turkey to stop 'meddling in neighbors' affairs'

US Rep. Ilhan Omar (D-MN) (L) talks with Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) during a rally with fellow Democrats before voting on H.R. 1, or the People Act, on the East Steps of the US Capitol on March 08, 2019 in Washington, DC. (AFP photo)
Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov © AFP

Russia’s foreign minister has urged Turkey to stop what he called interfering in the internal affairs of other countries and end support for terrorism.

"In general, it is important for our Turkish neighbors right now to aim at ending their meddling in the internal affairs of other states, be it Iraq or Syria," Sergei Lavrov said.

He made the remarks during a joint press conference with his Moldovan counterpart Andrei Galbur in Moscow on Monday.

"There are enough facts and evidence that Turkey continues this interference and supports terrorism," he added.

Ankara is widely believed to be the key conduit for armed militants slipping into Syria to join the foreign-backed militancy aimed at toppling the Damascus government.

Earlier this month, Russian Ambassador to the UN Vitaly Churkin said that purported evidence showed Ankara transferred arms and military hardware to the Daesh terrorist group in Syria under the cover of air convoys.

In February, the Russian Foreign Ministry also said that Ankara has been helping militants enter Syria illegally and join the terrorist groups that are fighting against the government of President Bashar al-Assad.

Turkey also stands accused of buying oil from Daesh. Russia has released satellite images, apparently showing long lines of trucks carrying oil from Daesh-controlled areas in northeastern Syria into Turkey.

Fighting over Karabakh

Also on Monday, Lavrov referred to the recent clashes between Azerbaijan and Armenia in the disputed border region of Karabakh, saying Ankara was “one-sided” in supporting its ally, Baku, in the fighting.

Armenian artillery units are seen in Martakert town in Karabakh on April 3, 2016. © AFP

On Sunday, Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan pledged his support for Azerbaijan, saying, “We pray our Azerbaijani brothers will prevail in these clashes with the least casualties.”

The fighting between the two countries erupted last Friday, leaving at least 33 troops and two civilians dead.


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