Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said Tuesday Moscow and Ankara's military cooperation would not be deterred by the United States imposing sanctions on Turkey earlier this month.
"We have confirmed our mutual intention to develop military ties with Turkey" despite "Washington's illegitimate pressure", Lavrov told reporters following talks with Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu in Moscow.
Yet, Cavusoglu — speaking alongside his Russian counterpart Sergei Lavrov in the Black Sea resort town of Sochi— stressed that Turkey's relations with Russia are not an alternative to its ties with NATO and the European Union.
His comments came after fellow NATO member Washington sanctioned Turkey over its purchase of Russian S-400 missile defences, and the EU prepared punitive steps over Turkey's dispute with members Greece and Cyprus over Mediterranean offshore rights.
Cavusoglu announced that Turkey aims to produce Russia's COVID-19 vaccine Sputnik V domestically.Turkey requested more information from Russia about the vaccine and Health Minister Fahrettin Koca informed the presidential cabinet on Monday that everything was on the right track, Cavusoglu added.