Turkey, Russia cooperation to be ‘hope’ for region

Exchanging views on political, military, economic issues will strengthen both Turkey and Russia, says Turkish president

Turkey, Russia cooperation to be ‘hope’ for region

By Ilkay Guder

SOCHI, Russia

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan on Monday said the cooperation between Turkey and Russia will "be hope to the region".

Speaking ahead of his meeting with Russian President Vladimir Putin in Russia's coastal city of Sochi, Erdogan said exchanging views on political, military and economic issues will strengthen both Turkey and Russia.

"I believe that not only of our region, but also the eyes of the whole world are now on Sochi," said Erdogan, adding that the results of the Sochi talks will bring new hope to the region.

Putin said Turkey-Russia relations "are developing positively."

"In terms of trade, it's growing intensely. Our relations are also improving in terms of regional security," Putin added.

Erdogan is accompanied by Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu, Energy and Natural Resources Minister Fatih Donmez, Treasury and Finance Minister Berat Albayrak, Defense Minister Hulusi Akar, Trade Minister Ruhsar Pekcan, head of National Intelligence Service (MIT) Hakan Fidan, Presidential Spokesman Ibrahim Kalin and Presidency Communications Director Fahrettin Altun.

Among the Russian delegation are Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov, Energy Minister Aleksandr Novak, Defense Minister Sergey Shoygu and Kremlin Spokesman Dmitry Peskov.

The bilateral meeting, which was closed to the media, started at 2.50 p.m. local time (1150GMT).

Relations between Turkey and Russia, economy and energy issues, as well as regional and international issues, particularly Syria, were among the topics expected to be discussed.

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