Putin, Erdogan to meet to end tensions


Ankara/Moscow—Russian President Vladimir Putin and his Turkish counterpart Recep Tayyip Erdogan on Wednesday held their first phone call since Ankara downed one of Moscow’s jets in Syria last year, both sides said, and will later meet in person.
Putin said after the phone call with Erdogan that he would lift travel restrictions to Turkey. The downing of a Russian warplane in November shattered ties between the two nations and saw Moscow slap an embargo on Turkish food products and ban charter flights and the sale of package tours to the country.
The Turkish president said in a statement after the call that the two leaders would “remain in contact and “meet in person” to “reinvigorate bilateral relations and fight terrorism together.”
The two leaders spoke as they sought to mend ties over the November incident that saw Moscow slap sanctions on Ankara.
The Kremlin said that Putin, at an event with schoolchildren in Moscow earlier on Wednesday, also expressed his sympathy over a triple suicide bombing and gun attack at Istanbul’s Ataturk airport that killed at least 36 people.
“President Putin expressed condolences to the Turkish people over the monstrous terrorist attack,” Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov said.—Agencies

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