The Cradle, October 20, 2022 — Turkey has remained adamant about enforcing western sanctions on Russia despite its NATO membership.
An official US delegation traveled to the Turkish capital Ankara this week to pressure officials and business leaders into complying with western sanctions against Russia, according to a report by Bloomberg.
Led by the US Treasury Department’s Assistant Secretary for Terrorist Financing and Financial Crimes, Elizabeth Rosenberg, the US delegation was in Ankara between 17 and 19 October, and met with the Turkish central bank governor as well as officials from the Ministry of Finance, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, and representatives from the private sector.
According to the US State Department, Rosenberg was in Turkey to “discuss sanctions and export controls imposed on Russia following its invasion of Ukraine.”
Rosenberg was formerly a senior fellow at the Center for a New American Security, a Washington think tank that receives direct funding from the department of defense and from weapon makers like Raytheon and Northrop Grumman. She has previously drafted sanctions against Iran, Libya, and Syria.
Turkey has remained adamant about enforcing western sanctions on Russia despite its NATO membership. Instead, President Recep Tayyip Erdogan has chosen to broaden economic and military cooperation with the Kremlin, drawing the White House’s ire.
Just last week, Erdogan revealed that both nations instructed their energy authorities to work on a Russian proposal that will transition Turkey into “a gas hub for Europe.”
The Turkish leader has met with his Russian counterpart, Vladimir Putin, four times in the past four months. He also leveraged his relations with Moscow and Kiev to position himself as a mediator between the two sides, sponsoring a landmark deal that saw the resumption of grain shipments across the Black Sea from Ukrainian ports in August.
Nonetheless, Erdogan’s close working relationship with Putin has set off alarms across the west, as last month the Financial Times revealed that Washington and its allies would be focusing their efforts on sanctioning Turkey for its banking system’s adoption of the Russian Mir payment system.