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Putin, Erdogan Discuss Syria, Mutual Projects, Pledge to Commission TurkStream by Year End - Kremlin

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan is expected to visit Russia in connection with the opening of the TurkStream gas pipeline later this year, according to Turkish Ambassador Mehmet Samsar.

Russian President Vladimir Putin and his Turkish counterpart, Erdogan, discussed in a phone call various international issues, including the launch of the much-anticipated TurkStream gas pipeline energy project , the Kremlin press service said Saturday.

"The sides positively assessed the steady development of multifaceted bilateral cooperation, in particular, the implementation of strategic projects in the energy sector and defense industry. They noted with satisfaction that the TurkStream gas pipeline would be put into operation by the end of December", the Kremlin said in a statement.

The leaders had also agreed on a schedule of upcoming high-level contacts, the statement added.

TurkStream is envisaged as a 570-mile double pipeline with a combined transport capacity of 31.5 billion cubic meters, intended to deliver Russian gas to Turkey and further, including southern regions and southeast Europe.

Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov said earlier that no exact date for Erdogan's visit had yet been set.

TurkStream is expected to ensure gas supplies to Turkish and European consumers, bypassing unreliable national transit partners, including Ukraine.

The two offshore parallel pipelines will run from Russia's Russkaya CS, near Anapa city, through the Black Sea to Turkey's receiving terminal of Luleburgaz near Kiyikoy city, at which point one of the petrochemical pipelines will continue to the Turkish-European border.


The two presidents also discussed in the phone call the situation in Syria in the context of the implementation of the October 22 Sochi memorandum.

"Great attention was paid to the Syrian settlement. In the context of the implementation of the memorandum of understanding between the Russian Federation and the Republic of Turkey, adopted after the high-level talks in Sochi on October 22, 2019, the sides stressed the importance of continuing coordinated steps to stabilize the situation in the northeast of Syria in strict compliance with the principles of its territorial integrity, sovereignty and unity," the Kremlin said.

In addition, the presidents exchanged views on the situation in the Idlib de-escalation zone, stressing the need for further joint efforts to implement the relevant Russian-Turkish agreements reached in September 2018.

The two leaders also welcomed the results of the first meeting of the Syrian Constitutional Committee, which convened in Geneva on October 30. The Kremlin added that the two had noted the "decisive contribution of the guarantor countries of the Astana process to the preparation of this event."

They reaffirmed commitment to further promoting the intra-Syrian dialogue, according to the Kremlin.

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