Turkey’s foreign policy is being directed by Moscow - main opposition party leader

Russia’s Putin is directing Turkey’s foreign policy, Diken news site quoted Kemal Kılıçdaroğlu, the leader of Turkey’s main opposition Republican People’s Party (CHP), as saying on Friday at the party’s caucus., 

“We told the government to make contact with Syria. They did not listen to us. They said Syria’s Assad is a terrorist,” Kılıçdaroğlu said. “However, Russia has taken control, and it has sat Turkey and Syria at the same table. Who is directing Turkey’s foreign politics? Putin is.”

Turkey’s ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP) stepped into the conflict in Syria shortly after anti-regime protests started in 2011, and has supported opposition groups fighting against President Bashar Assad since 2012.

The AKP downgraded its diplomatic ties with the Syrian government early in the conflict and has condemned Assad’s reaction to the uprisings. However, the Turkish and Syrian intelligence chiefs came together in Moscow earlier this week to hold the first official meeting in years.

“We brought forward proposals on the foreign policy, but the government rejected it. We suggested holding an international conference, producing a solution for the Syrian Issue, they ignored that as well,” Kılıçdaroğlu said. “However, upon Putin’s invitation to a meeting on Syria in Astana, they attended.”