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3 Jul, 2023 22:45

Erdogan blames ‘war lobby’ for Ukraine peace process failure

Türkiye’s “sincere efforts” to end the conflict have been sabotaged, the country’s president claims
Erdogan blames  ‘war lobby’ for Ukraine peace process failure

Efforts to resolve the ongoing conflict between Moscow and Kiev have been “obstructed and eroded by the war lobby,” Türkiye’s President Recep Tayyip Erdogan has claimed. The president made the remarks on Monday while speaking to reporters in Ankara.

“The diplomatic efforts, which were initiated with the Istanbul process and proceeded with captive exchanges, have unfortunately been obstructed and eroded by the war lobby,” Erdogan stated.

The president claimed Türkiye itself had been targeted by said “war lobby,” without naming any precise culprits. If Türkiye’s peace efforts had succeeded early on in the conflict, most of the destruction could have been avoided, Erdogan explained.

Türkiye hosted peace talks between Moscow and Kiev shortly after hostilities broke out in February 2022. The negotiations culminated in a preliminary peace deal, which was initialed in Istanbul.

However, Ukraine reneged on its commitments after Moscow withdrew its forces from the vicinity of Kiev, shortly after the deal was reached.

Russian and Ukrainian representatives haven’t met at the negotiating table to discuss peace prospects since then. Moscow, however, maintains that it is ready to resolve the crisis through diplomatic efforts, while repeatedly blaming the collective West for pushing Kiev into a war “to the last Ukrainian.”

The Ukrainian leadership, for its part, has explicitly prohibited itself from ever engaging in talks with Moscow while Russian President Vladimir Putin remains in power.