Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlüt Çavuşoğlu met with President Petro Poroshenko of Ukraine and his delegation in Istanbul on 9 April 2018.
At the meeting, Turkey-Ukraine relations and regional issues were discussed.
Relations between Turkey and Ukraine have not been affected by Turkey’s good relations with Russia. Quite the contrary, the relations are going extremely well.
Especially Turkey’s determined stance regarding the annexation of Crimea by Russia has not changed since relations between the two countries were revived after a crisis.
This “principled stance” over Crimea has ensured strong relations between Turkey and Ukraine.
As we know, Russia had occupied southern Ukraine’s Crimean Peninsula in March 2014 following a referendum, which is regarded as illegal under international law. International community also strongly rejected the annexation and sided Ukraine.
Following the occupation, the United States and EU states relatively imposed political and economic sanctions against Russia.
Since then, Crimean Tatars, Muslim Turkish minority, have been complaining about Russia’s repression, including arbitrary arrests and detentions.
Turkey has so far refused to recognize the Russian occupation of Crimea and has voiced support for Ukraine’s territorial integrity and sovereignty.
Mutual trade between Turkey and Ukraine has also been booming.
The Passport-free travel agreement between Turkey and Ukraine entered into force on June 1, 2017. Citizens of both countries can go in and out, transit or remain within the territory of Ukraine or Turkey without a visa for 90 days. This was a remarkable move towards furthering social relations between two countries.
In an article aired on Insamer, Burak Çalışkan expresses following remarks regarding Ukraine – Turkey relations:
“Ukraine as a country with a developed defense industry and Turkey as a country wanting to make progress in this field have carried out some important projects together in recent years.”
“Relations between Turkey and Ukraine which gained a significant momentum in the last three years in terms of politics, military, diplomacy, culture and economy, have evolved into a strategical partnership. In particular, the joint actions of Turkey and Ukraine in the crises they have experienced with Russia and their cooperation in the Black Sea Region will provide important advantages for both parties in the future. Furthermore, considering the export and import goods of both countries, it is seen that they do not have competing economies; on the contrary, they are trading partners who can complement each other. All these developments will carry Turkey-Ukraine relations to a much more advanced level in the following period.”