US pressing Turkey to end support for both Russia and Hamas – WSJ
Recep Tayyip Erdogan (Photo: Press Service of the President of Turkey)

The head of the Biden administration's sanctions office has warned Turkish officials that the country is fueling violence on two continents by funding the terrorist group Hamas and helping Russia evade sanctions, The Wall Street Journal reports.

Despite U.S. sanctions targeting Hamas financiers over the past decade, Turkey has allowed the group's investment firms, holding companies, real estate brokers and many other businesses to do business with Istanbul, U.S. officials said.

The publication noted that Turkey's trade with Russia has grown sharply over the past year, despite export controls designed to block the flow of electronics and other commercial goods needed by Russia to support the military invasion.

U.S. Under Treasury Secretary Brian Nelson stated it would be "very bad" if "any future attack by Hamas was linked to Turkish support or funding," the report said.

Read also: Machine tools, diamonds, drone motors featured in 12th package of EU sanctions – Bloomberg

In particular, WSJ emphasized that according to the information of its sources, Turkish individuals and legal entities are at risk of falling under a number of sanctions due to the provision of goods and services to Russia prohibited by Western export controls.

Erdogan's government does not recognize Hamas as a terrorist organization, as the United States does. He draws a distinction between the group's military and political wings and questions the flow of money from business to finance the arms.

At the beginning of November 2023, the USA expanded sanctions against the Russian Federation. The list also includes companies from Turkey, the UAE, China, and Switzerland.

On November 6, it was reported that Dutch companies continue to supply goods to Russia through Turkey after the introduction of sanctions.

On November 14, the Washington Post reported that the largest oil refinery in Greece – Motor Oil Hellas – continues to receive Russian oil products, but it does so through Turkey.