“We have warned the countries, whether they go to the Black Sea or not, not to send their warships across the Black Sea. We are applying the provisions of the Montreux Convention, which gives Ankara the right to manage those two waterways,” the minister said.
According to the 1936 Montreux Convention, Turkey has the right to ban the use of the Bosphorus and the Dardanelles during the war. Ukraine has asked Turkey to implement the convention and ban access to Russian warships.
According to the convention, Turkey can also grant an exception for the passage of ships returning to their ports, so this has caused some confusion about the application of the ban, as some ships have ports in the Black Sea.
Turkey has criticized Russia’s military aggression against Ukraine but is also trying to balance its close ties with Ukraine with its interests so as not to disrupt its fragile economic relationship with Russia.