• Russian President Vladimir Putin met with his Turkish counterpart Recep Tayyip Erdogan this Friday in Sochi

    • The meeting, in which economic cooperation, the war in Ukraine and the war in Syria were discussed, lasted four hours

    Russia Seek financial help from Turkey in order to circumvent Western sanctions against Moscow. This follows from the joint statement published this Friday after a meeting between the Russian president, Vladimir Putinand its Turkish counterpart, Recep Tayyip Erdogan.

    The meeting took place in sochiin southern Russia, and has lasted four hours. These two leaders celebrate several bilateral meetings year. They never, however, last that long.

    “Both presidents have agreed to increase the trading volume between the two countries on a balanced basis and the expectations of the two countries in fields of economy and energybut also in transportation, agriculture, infrastructure, industry, finance and tourism&rdquor ;, says the final document of the meeting.

    Turkey, since the beginning of the Russian invasion, has been radically against applying sanctions against Moscow; partly so as not to damage an already very weak Turkish economy, with a official inflation which is close to 80%. During the war in Ukraine, ankara tried to maintain a balance between Kyivthe West and Moscow, something that has allowed the Erdogan government to manage to mediate between Ukraine and Russia to achieve the Ukrainian wheat and grain export agreement, signed two weeks ago in istanbul.

    “The two leaders ratify their commitment to the safe grain and food exports of Ukrainian ports according to the Istanbul Agreement. The constructive relationships between the two countries played a key role in achieving the goal & rdquor ;, reads the statement.

    Payments in rubles

    During the meeting, Putin and Erdogan also agreed to pay for Russian gas in rubles, one of the measures Moscow took in the spring in response to european sanctions to Russian energy.

    “The transition to our national currency will be gradualand Turkey will initially pay in rubles a part of the gas shipments from Russia & rdquor ;, the Russian deputy prime minister, told the press after the meeting, alexander novakwhich has ensured that Putin and Erdogan have reached several financial and banking agreements.

    Before the meeting in Sochi, Ukraine leaked to the newspaper ‘The Washington Post‘ that Putin wanted to get agreements from his Turkish counterpart to circumvent Western sanctions on the Russian economy. The risks for Turkey are high: Turkish companies working with russian entities sanctioned will be likely to be themselves sanctioned both in Europe and in the United States.

    A new military operation in Syria

    The last time Erdogan and Putin met was two weeks ago in Tehran, where the Turk tried – unsuccessfully – to seek the green light from the Russian for a new Turkish military operation in northern Syria against the Kurdish YPG militias.

    These militias are linked to pkk guerrillaan organization considered terrorist by Ankara —also by the EU and the US—, and which has at war against Turkey since the 1980s.

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    The YPG, however, have to date been the allies of USA in the war in Syria against the Islamic State. The US and Russia, with a military presence in the territory of this militia, are against this hypothetical Turkish military operation.

    “We confirm our determination to act cooperatively against terrorist organizations in Syria & rdquor ;, says the statement after the meeting between Putin and Erdogan. The phrase is the same that Erdogan got in the previous meeting in Tehran. Since then, the operation has not started and is not expected.