Turkey, Politics

Turkey, Russia, Iran to meet in Sochi over Syria

Recep Tayyip Erdogan, Vladimir Putin and Hassan Rouhani to attend trilateral meeting on Nov. 22

Turkey, Russia, Iran to meet in Sochi over Syria

By Ilker Guder and Sinan Uslu


A trilateral meeting on Syria between Turkey, host Russia, and Iran will be held on Nov. 22 in the Black Sea city of Sochi, a Turkish presidential source said Thursday.

President Recep Tayyip Erdogan will take part in the meeting in the Russian resort, where he met on Monday with his Russian counterpart Vladimir Putin, said the source, who asked not to be named due to restrictions on talking to the media.

The participants from Ankara, Moscow and Tehran will discuss developments in Syria and the recent state of the region, the source said.

Iranian President Hassan Rouhani is also expected to attend the Putin-hosted gathering, the source added.

Turkey's presidential spokesman Ibrahim Kalin said in a statement that the three guarantor countries would discuss the progress on reducing violence in Syria, and de-escalation zones, which were established after the Astana talks.

Kalin said the parties would also discuss delivery of humanitarian aid to Syria and possible contributions to the Geneva process towards a political solution in the country under the UN Security Council Resolution 2254. 

Deputy Prime Minister Bekir Bozdag earlier on Thursday confirmed the meeting, saying: "Our president will soon again be in Russia."

Bozdag told reporters in Istanbul that Turkey maintained an "active" attitude towards protecting the territorial integrity and political unity of Syria since the beginning of the civil war there in 2011.

"Together with Turkey, Russian President Putin and Iran will handle Astana [talks] and the political transition process in Syria. They will make important assessments," he said.

He added that Turkey had played an "active" role both in Astana talks and the Geneva processes.

Turkey and Russia, together with Iran, are the guarantor countries who brokered a cease-fire in Syria in December 2016 leading to the Astana, Kazakhstan talks, which are being held in parallel to UN-backed discussions in Geneva to find a political solution to the six-year conflict.

The eight round of Astana talks is expected to be held in the second half of December.

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