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Putin to visit NATO member Turkiye on 12 February

February 1, 2024 at 7:22 pm

Russia’s President Vladimir Putin attends annual special televised question-and-answer session and year-end news conference scheduled to take place at the Gostiny Dvor trade and exhibition centre in Moscow, Russia on December 14, 2023 [Sefa Karacan – Anadolu Agency]

Russian President, Vladimir Putin, will visit Turkiye on 12 February to meet counterpart, Recep Tayyip Erdogan, a Turkish official told Reuters on Wednesday (31 January), in what will be the Russian leader’s first trip to a NATO ally since Moscow’s invasion of Ukraine in February 2022, Reuters reports.

According to the report, Putin’s scope to travel abroad has been limited since March last year when the International Criminal Court (ICC) issued an arrest warrant against him for the alleged deportation of Ukrainian children to Russia, a war crime. Russia denied the charge and called the move outrageous, but said it was legally void in any case because Russia is not a member of the ICC.

Turkiye is also not a party to the Rome Statute of the ICC, so Putin can travel to Turkiye without fear of being arrested under the warrant, the report added.

Turkiye, which shares a maritime border with both Ukraine and Russia in the Black Sea, has sought to maintain good ties with both nations since Moscow’s full-scale invasion. It has provided military support to Kyiv and voiced support for its territorial integrity, but also opposes sanctions on Russia.

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