Erdogan and Putin discuss improving ties over phone
Turkish President Tayyip Erdogan and Russian leader Vladimir Putin held a telephone call on Friday where they discussed improving bilateral ties in addition to the latest developments in the Russia-Ukraine war.
During the call, Erdogan repeated Ankara's willingness to do its part to peacefully resolve the war in Ukraine, Turkish presidential office said in a statement.
The phone call came a day after EU commissioner Mairead McGuinness visited Turkey to warn the government and Turkish companies against the risks of being covered by the sanctions imposed by the EU on Russia.
NATO member Turkey has close relations with both Ukraine and Russia and has sought to balance ties during the war, rejecting Western sanctions on Moscow while criticizing the Russian invasion and supplying Kyiv with armed drones.
Turkey’s exports to Russia have been breaking records since the War in Ukraine began in February and mystery capital attributed by some experts to Russian funds have reached new highs, allowing Turkish policymakers to boost foreign reserves despite a growing trade deficit.
Five Turkish banks adopted the Russian Mir payment system, a domestic alternative to Visa and Mastercard which exited Russia, but facing unprecedented pressure from the US, all the banks have left the system as of September 29.
Last week, Turkish officials asked Russia to postpone a part of Ankara’s payments due for natural gas to 2024 in an attempt to alleviate the negative impact of higher energy prices.