Tatar leader plays down Turkey intervention in Crimea

Mustafa Jemilev, who has been in close contact with Turkey's Foreign Minister Ahmet Davutoglu since Russia annexed the peninsula after a March 16 referendum saw the majority Russian people of Crimea opt out of Ukraine in favor of joining Moscow, has been campaigning arduously for his people.

Tatar leader plays down Turkey intervention in Crimea

World Bulletin / News Desk

The former head of the Crimean Tatar Mejlis (Parliament) and Ukrainian MP Mustafa Jemilev said that Turkey would not be able to intervene in Crimea due to its bilateral relations with Russia.

Speaking to the Russian-language version of Voice of America (Golos Ameriki), Jemilev implied that Turkey's hands were tied on the situation.

'Turkey gets 50% of its natural gas from Russia,' Jemilev said, adding 'the trade between the two nations is worth $38 billion'.

'If all of this was to stop, the economy would be in a dire condition,' he said.

Jemilev, who has been in close contact with Turkey's Foreign Minister Ahmet Davutoglu since Russia annexed the peninsula after a March 16 referendum saw the majority Russian people of Crimea opt out of Ukraine in favor of joining Moscow, has been campaigning arduously for his people.

Before the referendum, Jemilev met with Russian president Vladimir Putin in Moscow, but this seemingly failed to reassure Jemilev and the Crimean Tatar people who boycotted the referendum, claiming that it had been conducted under the threat of pro-Russian gunmen who had occupied the region after the fall of ousted Ukrainian president Viktor Yanukovich's government in Kiev.

The Turkic-speaking Muslim Crimean Tatars, who are natives of Crimea but became a minority in their homeland after Soviet dictator Josef Stalin exiled them in 1944, also complain that the post-Yanukovich Crimean parliament failed to consult them regarding the fate of the peninsula.

Fearing a repeat of 1944, the 300,000 Crimean Tatars living in the peninsula are now working with the international community and discussing ways to seek autonomy for their community.

Jemilev himself has been denied access to his homeland due to his being a member of the Ukrainian parliament.

Last Mod: 05 Nisan 2014, 14:17
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