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Russia's presidential envoy to Syria: Erdogan, Assad to meet soon

July 10, 2023 at 9:34 am

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan attends a mass opening ceremony in Gumushane, Turkiye on July 8, 2023. [Murat Kula – Anadolu Agency]

Presidents Bashar Al-Assad of Syria and Recep Tayyip Erdogan of Turkiye may hold a meeting in the presence of their Russian counterpart, Vladimir Putin, after the work on a roadmap for the normalisation of Syrian-Turkish relations is completed, Russian presidential envoy for the Syrian settlement, Alexander Lavrentiev, said yesterday.

Lavrentiev said that there are specific issues which stand in the way of normalising relations between Ankara and Damascus, including the Turkish military presence in Syria.

He explained the normalisation process between the two nations is developing on a monthly basis.

“At first it was a meeting at the level of experts, then a tripartite meeting at the level of defence ministers. Then at the level of foreign ministers who assigned deputy ministers to work on a road map,” he explained.

“Work is currently underway to activate the road map, and the work is proceeding actively and intensively, and when the parties finish their work, the presidents will be informed of the results in order to work to hold a meeting,” said Lavrentiev.

Referencing the US presence in northeastern Syria, Putin’s envoy said: “Without the US military presence in Syria, the situation there would have improved. Washington is plundering Syria’s resources to cover the expenses of its forces in Syria.”

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