Turkey, World

Turkey is its own axis, says deputy PM

Numan Kurtulmus denies Turkey is drifting from traditional Western-oriented foreign policy

17.08.2016
Turkey is its own axis, says deputy PM Turkey's Deputy Prime Minister Numan Kurtulmus

Ankara

ANKARA 

Deputy Prime Minister Numan Kurtulmus rejected Wednesday claims Turkey was moving away from its traditional Western-oriented foreign policy.

"Turkey is its own axis," Kurtulmus said at Cankaya Palace during a meeting with NGOs.

"Both yesterday, today and tomorrow, an axis debate about Turkey is wrong and useless," Kurtulmus said, adding the country would continue with its "multilateral and active" foreign policy.

"Turkey's enhancing of relations with one region or one country does not mean the weakening of relations with other regions and countries," Kurtulmus said.

The tepid response by many Western nations to Turkey's 15 July defeated coup attempt – and a subsequent trip to Russia by President Recep Tayyip Erdogan – have led many commentators to suggest that the country was departing from its traditional pro-Western foreign policy orientation.

Erdogan’s visit to Russia was his first overseas trip since the July 15 coup attempt, the aftermath of which has seen Turkey criticize Western governments and the EU for failing to support Turkish democracy in the face of a military takeover while warning Ankara to respect human rights and the rule of law.

(Reporting by By Ali Kemal Akan; Writing by Diyar Guldogan)


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