Turkey warn battleships against using its straits for Ukraine war

Turkey warn battleships against using its straits for Ukraine war
Russia's invasion of Ukraine has seen Turkey take steps to limit Moscow's ability to boost its assault by sea.
2 min read
01 March, 2022
Istanbul is situated at the heart of the straits [Getty]

Turkey has warned battleships against using the Turkish Straits to reach Ukraine, as Ankara activates a treaty that grants it greater control over the waterway.

Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu said that Black Sea and non-Black Sea nations have been alerted to the implementation of the 1936 Montreux Treaty, which allows Turkey to block warships from accessing the straits during times of war.

The treaty will most likely affect Russia, which has used the Turkish Straits to reach Ukraine during its unprovoked invasion of Ukraine.

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"We have alerted both countries of the region and elsewhere not to pass warships through the Black Sea," Cavusoglu said. "We are applying the Montreux Convention."

Six Russian warships and a submarine have already passed through the straits over the past month, Al Jazeera reported.

Turkey's decision to define the situation in Ukraine as "a war" on Sunday allowed it to activate the Montreux Treaty.

Turkey has been critical of Russia's invasion of Ukraine and previously supplied Kyiv with drones that have so far been effective in the war.

Defence Minister Hulusi Akar has also called on all sides to respect the treaty.

While the treat can prevent warships from entering the Black Sea it cannot block entry to naval vessels returning to their home ports.