Antony Blinken blasts "so-called ally" Turkey, hints at more sanctions

Antony Blinken blasts

PanARMENIAN.Net - U.S. President-elect Joe Biden’s choice for secretary of state on Tuesday, January 19 accused NATO member and "so-called strategic partner" Turkey of not acting like an ally and said Washington would review if further sanctions are required on Ankara over its acquisition of a Russian air defense system, Reuters reports.

Last month, Washington imposed long-anticipated sanctions on Turkey’s defense industry over its acquisition of S-400 missile defense systems from Moscow, in a move Turkey called a “grave mistake.”

“The idea that a strategic - so-called strategic - partner of ours would actually be in line with one of our biggest strategic competitors in Russia is not acceptable,” Antony Blinken, Biden’s choice for chief U.S. diplomat, told lawmakers.

“I think we need to take a look to see the impact that the existing sanctions have had and then determine whether (there is) more that needs to be done,” Blinken said during his Senate Foreign Relations Committee confirmation hearing.

Blinken’s comments came a day before Biden takes over from the administration of President Donald Trump, with whom Turkish President Tayyip Erdogan had a close relationship.

“Turkey is an ally, that in many ways... is not acting as an ally should and this is a very, very significant challenge for us and we’re very clear-eyed about it,” Blinken said.

Photo: Alex Edelman/Pool via REUTERS
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