Russian Deputy Foreign Minister, Mikhail Bogdanov, has announced that a quadripartite meeting between the foreign ministers of Syria, Turkey, Iran, and Russia will take place in early April. “We are currently preparing, and I expect that these consultations will take place in Moscow at the beginning of April to prepare for the ministerial meeting,” Bogdanov stated, according to the Russian news agency “Sputnik.”
Bogdanov’s statement comes after a phone call between Russian President Vladimir Putin and Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan, where the Kremlin confirmed that “the Syrian problem was addressed, and the importance of continuing the process of normalizing Turkish-Syrian relations was stressed.”
Turkish Foreign Minister, Mevlut Cavusoglu, stated that the Russian side proposed to reschedule the meetings, possibly after joint consultation with the Syrian side. They then confirmed that the meeting would be arranged at a future date, and Turkey agreed to this proposal.
According to diplomatic sources quoted by Asharq Al-Awsat newspaper, Turkey is interested in continuing talks aimed at normalizing relations with Damascus. The sources noted that Ankara is seeking key assurances from Russia and Iran, including the removal of the Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF), which is predominantly composed of the Kurdish People’s Protection Units (YPG), to a distance of 30 kilometres from its border. Additionally, Turkey seeks to ensure that the Syrian state has control over the border with Turkey.
After the quadripartite meeting between the deputy foreign ministers of Syria, Turkey, Iran, and Russia was postponed from March 15th and 16th, Syrian opposition sources quoted Turkish officials as confirming their continued efforts to hold the meeting before the presidential elections scheduled for May. However, the Syrian government has continuously stressed the need to separate the internal Turkish electoral issue from Syrian-Turkish relations.
This article was translated and edited by The Syrian Observer. The Syrian Observer has not verified the content of this story. Responsibility for the information and views set out in this article lies entirely with the author.