Davutoglu-Lavrov meeting in Istanbul

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On April 17 Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov paid a visit to Turkey. Within the visit Lavrov and his Turkish counterpart Ahmet Davutoglu had a private meeting followed by the meeting of the Turkey-Russia Joint Strategic Planning Group. The main aim of the meeting which was led by two ministers was preparations for the 4th Turkey-Russia High-Level Cooperation Council which is projected to hold in Turkey.


After the meeting two foreign ministers signed a joint declaration and answered the questions of the media representatives. It becomes clear from the declaration and the press conference that the main issues in bilateral relations and international agenda was discussed in the meetings. Both sides talked about the development perspectives of Turkey-Russia relations and expressed their will in the continuation of political dialogue, increasing the volume of the trade to 100 billion dollars, strengthening and intensifying cultural relations. Davutoglu and Lavrov exchanged their views on the issues about the Middle East, North Africa, the Balkans, Central Asia, Black Sea region and the nuclear program of Iran.


Lavrov’s visit to Istanbul can be regarded as an important sign for the solution of the problems and the future of the relations. Recall that serious differences in the approach to the Syrian problem and the mutual accusation caused tensions between two countries. Moreover, the installation of the radar system in the Malatya and the delivery of the Patriot missiles to Turkey caused dissatisfaction of the Kremlin.


On the other hand Russia’s new integration models for increasing its dominance in the CIS region is not desirable for Turkey. From this perspective it is interesting that in the meeting of the Turkey-Russia Joint Strategic Planning Group both sides took a step toward each other and gave a message of cooperation despite different views on particular issues. Seems that, two countries do not want to have problems because of international issues like in Syrian case, that is why they often come together to exchange their views on their positions. The expansion of the exchange of views and discussion circle from traditional issues to topics like Asia, the Balkans and Iranian nuclear program can be considered as an important point as well.

Nazim Cafersoy

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