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Erdogan, Putin Discuss Planned Syria Talks Over Phone

Turkey, Russia exchange views on upcoming Syrian peace talks in Kazakh capital Astana

President Recep Tayyip Erdogan and his Russian counterpart Vladimir Putin discussed over the phone Thursday planned intra-Syrian talks in Kazakhstan’s capital Astana, according to a presidential source.

The leaders also discussed bilateral issues, including further enhancement of relations and holding a High-Level Cooperation Council meeting in the near future, the source said on condition of anonymity due to restrictions on talking to the media.

Meanwhile, Putin and his Kazakh counterpart Nursultan Nazarbayev discussed Thursday the preparations for the Astana meeting and bilateral relations, the Kremlin said in a statement.

About the date of the meeting, Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov said Thursday: “There is no official announcement for now.”

Peskov also said Russia would be represented at experts level in the meeting. He added there was no planned meeting between Putin and Erdogan in Astana.

Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu said on Jan. 5 that negotiations to find a political resolution to the six-year war in Syria were due to begin in Astana between the Syrian government and opposition negotiators on Jan. 23.

Following last month’s Syria cease-fire deal brokered by Turkey and Russia, the Astana meeting comes as part of ongoing efforts by the two countries to promote a political solution in war-torn Syria.

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