German government welcomes moves to settle differences

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Ulrike Demmer, deputy government spokesperson at the federal press conference

It is good if Turkey and Russia "move closer again and find ways to settle their differences", says Ulrike Demmer

Photo: Bundesregierung/Denzel

It is good that the two parties are seeking closer ties again; relations had cooled markedly after a Russian military jet was shot down by Turkish forces.

The German government welcomes the meeting between Russian President Vladimir Putin and Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan, reported deputy government spokesperson Ulrike Demmer at the government press conference. The rift between Turkey and Russia had been a major concern for NATO, she said. The German government welcomes the fact that "the main parties are seeking closer relations again and looking for ways to bridge their differences," said Ulrike Demmer.

Turkey is an important partner within NATO

The Federal Foreign Office spokesperson Sawsan Chebli also underlined the importance of this rapprochement, and pointed to the comments made by Federal Foreign Minister Frank-Walter Steinmeier. "It is good that the two sides are once again coming together after a Russian fighter jet was shot down last year by Turkey," he said in an interview. "I do not, however, believe that relations between the two countries will be so close that Russia can offer Turkey an alternative to the security partnership offered by NATO."

"Any rupture of dialogue and channels of communication is the worst possible option in our crisis-ridden world, in which the crises are so complex and so dangerous," said Sawsan Chebli. After the meeting between the Russian and Turkish Presidents it is clear that this was not directed against Europe.

Rule-of-law investigation of the military coup

The spokesperson of the Federal Foreign Office had stressed earlier in the press conference that it is important to engage directly in talks with Turkey. The German government has consistently made it clear that, while Turkey naturally has a legitimate interest in investigating the military coup, the rule of law must be respected.