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Putin To Visit Turkey For TurkStream Launch, And Discuss Thorny Libyan Issue

Putin To Visit Turkey For TurkStream Launch, And Discuss Thorny Libyan Issue

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Russian President Vladimir Putin will travel to Turkey tomorrow to participate in the launch ceremony for the TurkStream pipeline, which will ferry Russian natural gas to Europe through the Turkish Republic.

“On January 8, Russian President Vladimir Putin will pay a working visit to Turkey (Istanbul) to attend the launch ceremony of the TurkStream gas pipeline,” a Kremlin statement said. It also said that Putin will hold talks with Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan to discuss issues of further development of Russian-Turkish cooperation and urgent international issues, including the situation in Syria and Libya, reported Russian state news agency TASS.

The Libyan issue is a thorny one for both sides who have grown much closer since Turkey down a Russian jet in Syria a few years ago. Russia is backing rebels lead by General Haftar who are closing in on the Libyan Government of National Accord, a U.N. and Turkish-backed government in Tripoli.

Turkey has also been a recent buyer of Russian military equipment to the consternation of the NATO alliance and especially U.S. President Trump who cancelled deliveries to Ankara of the F-35 stealth fighter.

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