Key issues on agenda of Putin-Erdogan meeting in Moscow

Key issues on agenda of Putin-Erdogan meeting in Moscow

Moscow and Ankara have great expectations from the meeting of presidents Vladimir Putin and Recep Tayyip Erdogan, scheduled for March 9-10 in Moscow, Prof. Dr. Salih Yilmaz of the Ankara Yildirim Beyazit University told .

Yilmaz, an expert in international relations, said Turkey is still expecting Russia to restore pre-crisis economic relations, as Moscow has not yet taken significant actions for import of Turkish products and a complete abolition of visa regime for Turkish citizens.

"During the meeting, Ankara intends to voice its position on the Gulen movement, accused of involvement in the attempted military coup in Turkey, as well as discuss Moscow's support for the Democratic Union Party (PYD) in Syria, which is considered by Ankara as a terrorist organization,” he said.

The expert added that in particular, Ankara expresses concern over the activity of PYD office in Moscow.

Yilmaz stressed that Turkey wants to purchase Russia's S-400 advanced surface-to-air missile systems to better protect its airspace, and it is expected to achieve progress in the matter in the meeting between the Russian and Turkish leaders.

He added that Russia also hopes for Turkey’s reciprocal understanding on a number of issues related to the Syrian conflict and NATO.

"Moscow wants Turkey to continue its initiative regarding the Syrian opposition,” he added. “Russia is concerned over US President Donald Trump’s policy on the safe zones, which can damage Ankara-Moscow cooperation.”

“Russia can also call on Turkey to control the presence of the NATO forces in the Black Sea region, which are creating tensions in the region," Yilmaz added.

The expert said Moscow and Ankara have learned from the Su-24 warplane incident, realize the mutual importance and try to avoid policies and actions that can jeopardize bilateral cooperation.

Yilmaz stressed that trust between Turkey and Russia will be discussed as part of Russian and Turkish leaders’ meetings.

Erdogan will visit Russia to take part in the meeting of the Turkey-Russia High Level Cooperation Council (HLCC).

Both leaders will chair the delegations during HLCC meetings.

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