In South Africa, Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan and his Russian counterpart Vladimir Putin on Thursday are set to have their second face-to-face meeting this year.
Erdogan and Putin will have a bilateral meeting on the sidelines of the annual summit of BRICS countries — Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa — hosted in Johannesburg.
The main topic of the meeting will be Syria. The leaders are also expected to exchange views on the upcoming Tehran summit as part of the Astana process on Syria.
Speaking at a news conference in Turkey on Wednesday before flying to Johannesburg, Erdogan said: “Developments in Syria, whether in Tal Rifaat or Manbij, are not going as desired.
“The only places that are going the desired way are Afrin, Jarabulus, and Al-Bab.”
Erdogan added that issues in Idlib and Daraa will also be addressed during his meeting with Putin. “Anything can happen in these places, at any time.”
The leaders’ first face-to-face meeting this year was in early April in Ankara, where they took part in the Akkuyu Nuclear Power Plant’s groundbreaking ceremony via video conferencing.
They also attended a tripartite summit on Syria with Turkey and Iran.
This year Erdogan and Putin have also spoken on the phone 16 times to discuss regional issues, particularly Syria, as well as bilateral relations.