Ankara (Times Of Ocean)- The Turkish government is taking all measures against alleged mines drifting toward its coasts and straits (Black Sea), Defense Minister Hulusi Akar said.
Akar said, “I hope they will destroy themselves without an accident or we will see them and destroy them with our anti-mine ships.”
According to Akar, the ministry examines and coordinates information about mines in the region and observes it by planes, helicopters, UAVs, and frigates.
The main intelligence agency of Russia reported on March 21 that several hundred mines had drifted into the Black Sea after breaking off from cables near Ukrainian ports. “After the start of the Russian special military operation, Ukrainian naval forces had deployed barriers of mines around the ports of Odessa, Ochakov, Chernomorsk and Yuzhny,” the FSB security service said. The cables were cut by storms, and some were floating in the western Black Sea, pushed along by the wind and the currents, according to the report.
Ukraine, however, refuted the claim, claiming it was disinformation intended to close off parts of the sea.
According to Ukrainian authorities, the two A-400M Turkish aircraft, which arrived in Ukraine the day after the war began to deliver humanitarian aid and evacuate Turkish citizens, are still at the airport.
Russia also informed Turkey that they are observing the aircraft, Akar said, adding, “However, both sides say it would be appropriate for the aircraft to remain in their current position due to various safety concerns. Hopefully, we will bring our planes to our country as soon as possible.”
In addition, the minister criticized NATO partners for imposing an embargo on Turkey’s defense industry.
“We are in a period when our friends and those we know as allies impose restrictions on implicit or explicit export licenses,” Akar stated.
As a burden-bearing state, Turkey has made every effort to fulfill the mission of the alliance in general,” by making every sacrifice and contribution possible.” he said.