Turkish President Recep Erdogan accused the West of supplying "old scrap metal” to Ukraine to drag out the conflict.
Speaking at a press conference after a meeting with Serbian President Aleksandar Vučić, Erdogan said that the West, while declaring military support for Ukraine, ships "stale weapons and scrap metal" to Kyiv. The position of the West is wrong because Western countries provoke Russia, and now they need to look for "ways to overcome the winter season” due to the cessation of gas supplies, he added.
Turkey's position will remain "balanced": Turkey advocates a ceasefire, but understands that there are no prerequisites for such a development.
Erdogan also said that Turkey would simplify the visa regime with Serbia. Aleksandar Vučić said in turn that Serbia was going to buy Bayraktar combat UAVs from Turkey. The deal is estimated at hundreds of millions of euros.
"Today we talked about expanding cooperation between our ministries of defense, military cooperation, cooperation in the defense industry. I want to say, and we do not hide it, that Serbia plans to buy Bayraktar drones. We know that the whole world wants to buy them, so we are in the line, waiting," Vučić said. "Hopefully, we will be able to implement the deal next year. We will pay much more than previously agreed. Instead of the initially agreed tens of millions of euros, we are ready to move to a figure of several hundreds of millions of euros for Bayraktar drones," the Serbian president said.
During the press conference, Aleksandar Vučić also announced joint Serbia-Turkey paratrooper exercises.
A Russian fighter with call sign Rassvet (Sunrise) destroyed an Abrams tank in the area of Avdiivka, the 15th Separate Guards Motorized Rifle Brigade said