Turkish politician warns on succumbing to US sanctions on Russian Mir
The head of the economic bureau of Turkey's Vatan Party calls for developing a Russian-like national payment system to withstand possible US sanctions and protect its interests.
Turkish Politician and Head of the economic bureau of Turkey's Vatan Party, Hakan Topkurulu, called on Wednesday for the government not to "succumb" to US sanctions regarding the Russian Mir payment system.
According to the Turkish newspaper Aydinlik, Topkurulu said that "The Atlantic front is trying to isolate Turkey from Russia and its neighbors to drag it into a situation in which it will succumb to sanctions. If Turkey succumbs to pressure today, other sanctions against the country may be on the agenda," reminding that the US treasury department previously threatened Turkish businessmen on cooperating with Russia.
Sputnik reported on Monday that it has received confirmation from Turkish banks Ishbank and Denizbank that following sanction threats, they halted operations with Russia's Mir bank cards. However, VakifBank, Halkbank, and Ziraat Bank assured that Mir cards are still fully functional and no suspension of services was notified.
While pointing out that Russia's economy was able to withstand US sanctions due to its national payment system after Mastercard and Visacard services were eliminated, the politician called on the government to develop its own national financial system, warning that Turkey might face a similar situation to Russia and it must be prepared.
It's noteworthy that last August, the US Deputy Secretary of Treasury Adewale "Wally" Adeyemo informed Turkey's Deputy Finance Minister Yunus Elitas that Turkey's increased cooperation with Russia could result in sanctions against Turkish business, and banks.
Adeyemo sent a letter to the American Chamber of Commerce in Turkey and Turkey's TUSIAD business association alerting them that their businesses and banks risked facing sanctions.
The letter stated that "Any individuals or entities providing material support to US-designated persons are themselves at risk of US sanctions," adding that "Turkish banks cannot expect to establish corresponding relationships with sanctioned Russian banks and retain their corresponding relationships with major global banks as well as access to the US dollar and other major currencies."
Turkey has announced previously that joining sanctions against Russia is unrealistic, as it aims to play a mediation role between Moscow and Kiev, and balance its position as a top member of NATO and a close neighbor to Russia, to protect its economy and vital interests holding it on both sides. However, as previous sanctions are showing no signs of effective impact on the Russian economy while EU economies are spiraling out of control, Western pressure is growing on countries to join the sanctions hysteria on Russia.
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