ISTANBUL: Turkiye said Saturday it was ready to push for local cease-fires in Ukraine and warned that neither Moscow nor Kyiv had the military means to “win the war.”
President Recep Tayyip Erdogan’s foreign policy adviser Ibrahim Kalin conceded that it seemed unlikely that the warring sides were ready to strike an “overarching peace deal” in the coming months.
But he said that the brutal cost of fighting might soon see them reconsider and accept localized truces in specific parts of the war zone.
“Turkiye is willing to push for local cease-fires and small localized de-escalations,” Kalin told reporters.
“Neither party is in a position to win the war militarily, on the ground.”
Erdogan has used his good relations with both Moscow and Kyiv to try and mediate an end to the nearly 11-month war.
NATO member Turkiye hosted two early rounds of peace talks and helped strike a UN-backed agreement restoring Ukrainian grain deliveries across the Black Sea.
Erdogan has also held repeated rounds of phone consultations with Russian President Vladimir Putin and Ukrainian leader Volodymyr Zelensky aimed at finding common ground.
Kalin said Russia was primarily interested in “security guarantees” from NATO and respect on the global stage.
“What Russia wants is to be respected as a major player and to (avoid) having NATO in their backyard,” Kalin said.
“Ukraine is not going to join NATO but they need to get enough security guarantee from Russia,” he said.