Russian Presidential spokesman Dmitry Peskov has confirmed that Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erodgan will meet Vladimir Putin tomorrow in Sochi.
Although Turkey continues to fund the jihadist terrorist group FSA in Syria, a group whose aims are competently contrary to those of Syria’s anti-terrorist coalition of which Russia is a member, at a diplomatic level, Turkey has in many ways grown closer to Russia than its own NATO colleagues.
Turkey’s diplomatic pivot to Russia is certainly in Turkey’s long economic benefit. Russia’s market for hot-weather agricultural produce as well as the Turkish tourist industry which relies on Russian vacationers suffered after Turkey downed a Russian jet in 2015.
Since then, almost exclusively due to pragmatism and calm on the Russian side, Ankara and Moscow have grown closer in spite of a seemingly unbridgeable chasm on Syria. Turkey, in spite of its position as an enemy of the Syrian government, nevertheless participates in the Astana Peace Talks which are currently taking place. No other NATO member is part of the process.
This will be the first meeting between Putin and Erdogan since the Turkish leader won a referendum on expanded powers on the 16th of April.