TURKEY

Erdoğan: Sochi meeting to provide very substantial opportunities to Operation Peace Spring

"I believe that this meeting will provide very substantial opportunities to ," Turkey's President stressed in his comments as speaking to reporters ahead of a bilateral meeting with Putin in Russia's coastal city of Sochi.

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan said Tuesday that a meeting with his Russian counterpart Vladimir Putin will contribute to Ankara's anti-terror operation in Syria.

"I believe that this meeting will provide very substantial opportunities to Operation Peace Spring," Erdoğan said ahead of a bilateral meeting with Putin in Russia's coastal city of Sochi.

Erdoğan said the two leaders will also exchange views on bilateral relations and regional issues, in particular Syria.

The leaders will co-chair meetings with delegations after a bilateral meeting and also hold a joint news conference.

Putin said Russia is aware of "very different dynamics" of the situation in northern Syria, adding that the meeting with Erdoğan will be "fruitful."

"I think our meeting today, our consultations are very much in demand, the current level of Russian-Turkish relations will play a role in resolving all the complex issues that have developed in the region to date.

"I hope that this will help to find answers to all questions, both in the interests of Turkey and Russia, and in the interests of all countries in the region," Putin added.

Erdoğan's one-day working visit comes after Ankara launched on Oct. 9 to eliminate terrorists from northern Syria in order to secure Turkey's borders, aid in the safe return of Syrian refugees, and ensure Syria's territorial integrity.

On Oct. 17, a U.S. delegation headed by Vice President Mike Pence paid a working visit to the capital Ankara, where they met Erdoğan and discussed Turkey's anti-terror operation.

Following the meeting, the two sides reached a 13-article agreement on northeastern Syria.

As part of the deal, Turkey paused its anti-terror push east of the Euphrates River for 120 hours to allow the withdrawal of terrorist PKK and its Syrian offshoot YPG from the planned safe zone.

In its more than 30-year terror campaign against Turkey, the PKK -- listed as a terrorist organization by Turkey, the U.S. and the European Union -- has been responsible for deaths of 40,000 people, including women, children and infants.

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