ANKARATurkiye has warned all countries against warships going through the Turkish Straits since the Russia-Ukraine war started, the country’s foreign minister said on Monday.
"We warned all riparian and non-riparian countries not to let warships go through the straits," Mevlut Cavusoglu told reporters after a Cabinet meeting in the capital Ankara.
"To date, there has been no request for passage through the straits,” Cavusoglu said.
Cavusoglu added that Turkiye is implementing the Montreux Convention for the straits “to the fullest,” and will continue to do so.
“Until today, the Russians were asking whether we would implement Montreux if needed. We told them that we would strictly follow the convention,” he added.
If Turkiye isn't a party to the war, it has the authority to not let the ships of belligerent countries go through its straits, he said. If a warship is returning to its base in the Black Sea, its passage is allowed, he added.
The 1936 convention gives Turkiye the authority to ban warships from the straits during times of war, including now.
Since Russia's war on Ukraine began last Thursday, it has been met by outrage from the international community, with the EU, UK, and US implementing a range of economic sanctions on Russia.
In the war, more than 350 civilians have been killed and over 1,600 injured, according to Ukraine’s Health Ministry.
*Writing by Gozde Bayar
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