Turkey's relationship with Russia not an alternative to that of U.S. or Europe - Ibrahim Kalin

# 17 April 2019 12:43 (UTC +04:00)

Turkey will not accept statements that question its status in NATO, the country's presidential spokesman said Tuesday, defending its multidimensional foreign policy, ONA reports citing Anadolu Agency.

Ibrahim Kalin In an interview with Anadolu Agenc, dismissed comments aimed at Turkey's membership in NATO amid a row with the U.S. over the purchase of a Russian missile defense system, asserting that Turkey will continue to take steps that will strengthen its position in the transatlantic alliance.

Kalin said it is not possible for Turkey to accept such statements, adding it is not a single country that will determine the status of a country in NATO but all NATO member countries.

"Besides, we are not an observer [country] there. We are one of the members. We are a country that has a say in all decisions," he said. "Therefore, we will not allow the questioning of Turkey's position in NATO."

In his remarks, he reiterated that Turkey's relationship with Russia was not an alternative to that of the U.S. or Europe.

He noted that it is quite normal for Turkey to develop various relationships in different areas in its foreign policy.

Kalin also rejected sanctions threats from Washington through the Countering America’s Adversaries Through Sanctions Act, or CAATSA, which was passed in 2017 against Iran, North Korea and Russia and combat their influence across the globe.

"Turkey is not a country to establish relations with such threats. This [purchase] is a decision taken within the framework of Turkey's national sovereignty," he added.