ANKARA - Turkey has become an unlikely new source of vital diesel for the Syrian government, according to shipping documents and sources.
Private Turkish oil company Aves, from the Mediterranean port city of Mersin, has loaded seven cargoes of ultra low sulfur diesel in April destined for Syria's state-controlled port of Banias.
Turkey is not subject to EU sanctions against Syria, however, the trade is a potential embarrassment for Ankara - one of Damascus' most outspoken critics.
The Turkish foreign ministry declined to comment on the specific matter but reiterated its position on Assad regime.
"Turkey's position on Syrian regime's brutality against its own people has been made obvious and Turkey would not be able to ignore any support or aid efforts to this situation," a foreign ministry official said.
Aves, specializing in sunflower seed oil and diesel according to its web site, confirmed the trade but declined to comment further.