Putin congratulates Erdogan: Victory shows Turks back your independent foreign policy

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Russia’s President Vladimir Putin congratulated Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan on his victory in the presidential election on Sunday, saying that his electoral win was evidence that the Turkish people supported his “independent foreign policy,” the Kremlin reported.

“The victory in the election was a natural result of your selfless work as the head of the Republic of Turkey, clear evidence of the Turkish people’s support for your efforts to strengthen state sovereignty and conduct an independent foreign policy,” the Kremlin cited Putin as saying in a message to Erdogan.


Putin added: “We highly appreciate your personal contribution to the strengthening of friendly Russian-Turkish relations and mutually beneficial cooperation in various areas.”

Putin and Erdogan, both renowned authoritarian leaders, have established and cultivated a close relationship over the years, despite their countries having distinct geopolitical interests and different degrees of friction with the West. Holding on to power for an extended period, Putin in Russia and Erdogan in Turkey, these strongmen have been able to find common ground and foster cooperation in various areas.

The development of close ties between Russia and Turkey can be attributed to several factors. Firstly, both leaders share a similar leadership style characterized by a strong centralization of power, control over media, and a crackdown on political opposition. This common ground has allowed them to understand and support each other's domestic policies. Additionally, both countries have faced criticism and political pressure from Western countries, particularly regarding their respective foreign policies. This shared experience has created a sense of solidarity between Putin and Erdogan, leading them to seek closer ties as a means of countering Western influence and asserting their own geopolitical interests.

Furthermore, Russia and Turkey have found areas of strategic convergence, particularly in the realm of energy and defense cooperation. Russia is a major supplier of energy resources to Turkey, including natural gas, which has fostered economic interdependence and strengthened bilateral ties. Additionally, the two countries have collaborated in the defense sector, with Turkey purchasing advanced military equipment from Russia, such as the S-400 missile defense system, despite objections from NATO and the US. These collaborations have not only enhanced their economic and military capabilities but have also served to deepen their diplomatic relationship.

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