Cavusoglu says date of four-party meeting on Syria postponed at Russia's request

20 March

The date of the four-party meeting of foreign ministers on Syria has been postponed at Russia's request, and its time has not yet been determined, Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu told reporters on Monday.

"The Russian side has told us that it has not completed preparations and suggested postponing [the meeting]. It was proposed to meet at other dates, we agreed to these," the Turkish minister said, not ruling out that the meeting was postponed at Syria's request.

The deputy foreign ministers of Iran, Russia, Syria, and Turkey were scheduled to meet in Moscow in March to discuss preparations for a ministerial meeting on normalizing relations between Ankara and Damascus.



Asked whether it was possible for the foreign ministry delegations to meet before the talks in December between the defense ministers of Turkey, Syria and Russia, Cavusoglu said the military meeting was of a technical kind. "There were technical issues, now political issues are being discussed. There are many political issues, for a meeting [at the highest level] it is necessary to make preparations, to discuss what steps to take, how cooperation can be established. Everything is done in stages: first the military and intelligence representatives meet, then there is a meeting at the level of foreign ministers. In between such meetings, there is a preparatory meeting, and then there are talks at the highest level. We have previously agreed on a road map [of talks]," Cavusoglu noted.

The process of normalization of relations between Ankara and Damascus was launched on December 28, 2022, in Moscow, when consultations between the heads of the Russian, Syrian, and Turkish defense ministries were held. At the meeting, an agreement was reached to create a joint trilateral commission. These consultations are to be followed by a meeting at the level of foreign ministers, the agenda of which will include holding talks between Turkish and Syrian Presidents Recep Tayyip Erdogan and Bashar al-Assad. Later, it was reported that Iran will take part in the consultations at the level of foreign ministers.

Erdogan told reporters last December 15 that he had offered his Russian counterpart Vladimir Putin to hold a trilateral meeting with the Syrian leader. This summit, he said, should be preceded by talks at the level of representatives of special services, defense and foreign ministers.



GSV "Russia - Islamic World"

Photo: Russian Foreign Ministry

Based on materials from TASS