Turkey has urged the NATO allies to show a milder reaction to the recent forced landing of Ryanair vessel in Minsk and the subsequent detention of opposition figure. Reuters reported that, citing two informed diplomatic workers familiar with the situation.
30 NATO allies have recently published a statement, in which they condemned the interception of Ryanair flight in Minsk and the detention of Roman Pratasevich. The text, however, did not mention any measures of punishment for these actions - something that the Baltic States and Poland insisted on. The statement was also considerably softer than the public statements by NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg.
According to the diplomats, Ankara insisted that all mentions of new Western sanctions against Belarus and calls for release of political prisoners are excluded from the statement of NATO member countries. The threats to stop NATO cooperation with Belarus were removed as well.
The diplomatic workers assume that Ankara tries to keep its relations with Moscow intact. At the same time, Turkey wants to support economic relations with Belarus via Turkish Airlines, which conducts daily flights to Minsk. The other possible reason could be Turkey's wish to host Russian tourists this summer.