Türkiye’s Policy of Balance in the Ukraine War
Türkiye has pursued a policy of support for Ukraine while maintaining relations with Russia since the outbreak of the war more than six months ago. The Russian invasion has met unprecedented Western sanctions while Türkiye focused on bringing Ukrainian and Russian sides to the table for negotiations to end the conflict. Even though the initial attempts at a ceasefire ultimately failed, Türkiye continued to push for a diplomatic breakthrough. The most recent Ukrainian grain exports deal has been hailed as a major accomplishment to alleviate the global food crises. Turkish President Erdogan recently paid a visit to Ukraine and signed agreements for reconstruction after meeting Ukrainian President Zelensky. As the West is focused on a sanctions policy and is increasingly threatened by exploding energy prices, Türkiye remains focused on a policy of balancing its support for Ukraine with continued relations with Russia.
What are the dynamics pushing Türkiye to pursue a policy of engagement with both Ukraine and Russia? What are the chances of further diplomatic breakthroughs? How can the Western sanctions be reconciled with Türkiye’s approach?
The SETA Foundation at Washington DC is pleased to host a panel of distinguished experts to discuss these questions and more.
Yevgeniya Gaber, Senior Fellow at Centre in Modern Turkish Studies at Carleton University
Rich Outzen, Nonresident Senior Fellow at Atlantic Council
Kadir Ustun, Executive Director at SETA DC
Kılıç Kanat, Research Director at SETA DC