Time: 11:30 p.m. CEST
Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan and Russia’s President Vladimir Putin met on Tuesday in St. Petersburg, Russia to discussion relations between two countries and in a separate meeting to discus the situation in Syria. The rebuilding of the damaged ties will need to restore the economic and trade relations, shaken by the downing of a Russian jet last year that Turkey claimed entered its airspace.
Russian President Putin said the official visit is a restart of the dialogue and relations. “Your visit today, which you made despite the really complex domestic political situation in Turkey, shows we all want to restart our dialogue and restore our relations,” said Putin, addressing Erdoğan, as Hurryiet Daily News on English reported.
Putin also said the restoration of the relations will need a time. “We will of course need some time to return to the pre-crisis levels in several fields, including tourism. We will, however, resolve the issue of resuming charter flights to Turkey in the near future. We will also enable Turkish construction companies to enter Russia,” Putin said.
As Hurryiet Daily News reports, this is Erdogan’s first visit to Russia since July 15 coup attempt, in which more than 240 people died. Erdogan said, “I must say at the beginning that Turkey will grant a strategic investment status to the Akkuyu nuclear power plant. We will boost closer ties in the defense industry together with Russia.” In addition, “the Turkish Stream project with Russia will be realized swiftly following a thorough review,” Erdogan said.
Syria crisis was an issue for the separate meeting after common news conference in St. Petersburg. Turkye and Russia have different standpoint on the way for resolving civil war in Syria. Putin is supporting Syrian President Bashar al-Assad. Turkey wants new government and political settlement in Syria without Assad.