Prime Minister Recp Erdogan made clear his nation was not going to be influenced by recent events in Georgia nor by American pleas for joining in a tough line approach to Russia. He told reporters Russia is the number one trade partner of Turkey and has risen to number one in tourism. He pointed out two thirds of Turkish gas and energy needs are being met by Russia. The Russian government has been delaying Turkish trucks for weeks and impairing trade relations between the two nations. Some observers believe the restrictions stem from Russian anger at the Turkish government decision to allow US ships to deploy into the Black Sea.
The ripple effects of the Georgia invasion of South Ossetia continue to echo through many nations in the region. Perhaps, it is time for all parties in the area to calm down, and discuss the events surrounding the conflict between Georgia and Russia, and explore alternative ways of resolving issues.