Russian and Turkish presidents to meet

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan will arrive in Russia today to meet with President Vladimir Putin. Today’s conference will see

Erdogan and Putin

Photo: IHA

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan will arrive in Russia today to meet with President Vladimir Putin.

Today’s conference will see Russia and Turkey—which have lukewarm relations—discussing critical security matters. While Ankara defied NATO’s objections to purchase the Russian S-400 air defense system in late 2017, it was at odds with Moscow during the recent Donbas war in Ukraine, where Ankara backed Kiev against the Pro-Russian separatists. In today’s conference, however, Erdogan will indicate his interest to purchase a second batch of the S-400 defense system.

Expect Turkey’s relations with the US to further deteriorate as a direct result of Ankara’s prospective arms deal with Moscow. In this context, it is highly likely that the US may impose further economic sanctions against Turkey in addition to the penalties that were levied last year under the framework of Countering America’s Adversaries through Sanctions Act (CAATSA). The US will also refrain from enticing Turkey and capitulating to Ankara’s demands, especially in matters concerning security. While Ankara will likely be excluded from future security projects within NATO and loose leverage in decision-making, it’s highly unlikely that Ankara’s NATO membership status will be impacted during the medium-to long-term due to Turkey’s geopolitical importance.

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