Russian President Vladimir Putin met his Turkish counterpart Recep Tayyip Erdogan in the Russian Black Sea resort of Sochi on Friday (August 5) for talks likely to focus on Syria, Ukraine, and the Russian construction of a nuclear power plant in southern Turkey.
Sitting opposite Putin ahead of their talks in the Black Sea city of Sochi, Erdogan said earlier meetings between Turkish and Russian delegations on politics, economic and trade issues had been fruitful.
Their meeting, less than three weeks since they held talks in Tehran, comes after Turkey helped broker a deal to resume Ukraine’s Black Sea grain exports which were blocked after Russian sent troops to Ukraine on February 24.
Turkey backs fighters in Syria who have fought against President Bashar al-Assad, who is in turn supported by Russia.
Ankara’s operations in northern Syria have largely targeted a Kurdish militia, which it views as a terrorist group.
Russian natural gas made up 45% of import-dependent Turkey’s gas purchases last year, which hit a record level as a result of drought and a related rise in gas-driven power production.
Russian nuclear conglomerate Rosatom is also building a nuclear plant at Akkuyu in southern Turkey, which Putin has said will start working next year.