Erdogan: Turkey Will Not Abide by US Sanctions

Erdogan: Turkey Will Not Abide by US SanctionsErdogan: Turkey Will Not Abide by US Sanctions

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan has slammed the new US economic sanctions on Iran, saying Turkey will not abide as they are aimed at unbalancing the world.
“US sanctions on Iran are wrong. For us, they are steps aimed at unbalancing the world; we don’t want to live in an imperialist world,” Erdogan told reporters on Tuesday, Aljazeera reported.
His comments came after Washington on Monday imposed a second set of sanctions on Iran, which target the country's banking sector and aim to slash its oil exports.
Eight countries, including Turkey, have received a US waiver to continue importing Iranian oil without consequences. 
According to data from the Energy Market Regulatory Authority’s Natural Gas Market Report for December 2017, about one-fifth of Turkey’s natural gas exports come from Iran.


Dangerous Approach 

Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu also warned Washington against the reimposition of sanctions on Iran, stressing that isolating the country is “dangerous”.
“While we were asking [for] an exemption from the United States, we have also been very frank with them that cornering Iran is not wise. Isolating Iran is dangerous and punishing the Iranian people is not fair,” he said at a press conference during a trip to Japan.
“Turkey is against sanctions; we don’t believe any results can be achieved through the sanctions. I think instead of sanctions, meaningful dialogue and engagement is much more useful.”
Cavusoglu had earlier conveyed the same message last July to a delegation of US officials, stressing that Turkey would not abide by anti-Iran sanctions since Iran is an important neighbor and partner.
“We buy oil from Iran and we purchase it in proper conditions. What is the other option?” Cavusoglu said.
Washington has imposed two sets of sanctions this year after pulling out of the landmark 2015 nuclear pact between world powers and Iran that US President Donald Trump derided as “defective”.
The new sanctions have sparked furious reactions from Iran, whose President Hassan Rouhani said the country would “proudly bypass your illegal, unjust sanctions”.
On Monday, Washington vowed to be “relentless” in countering Iran, with Secretary of State Mike Pompeo saying the US wanted Iran to make a “180-degree turn” and abandon its “current revolutionary course”.


Unacceptable Ultimatums 

The foreign ministers of Spain and Russia also hit out at US sanctions policy against Iran and ultimatums they say are being imposed by Trump’s administration, AFP reported.
“Sanctions are absolutely illegitimate. They are being imposed in flagrant violation of the UN Security Council’s decision,” Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov told reporters in Madrid.
“And the forms in which these measures are being declared and implemented cannot cause anything but deep disappointment. It is not acceptable in our age to pursue a policy based on ultimatums and unilateral demands.”
Spanish Foreign Minister Josep Borrell concurred, saying he rejected “any kind of position that resembles an ultimatum from anyone and also from the United States”.
“This notion of ‘you’re either with me or against me’ is of another era.”

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