A high-level Turkish delegation led by Deputy Foreign Minister Sedat Onal visited Moscow today for talks over key issues that have come to dominate bilateral relations in recent weeks. The delegation also included top defense, intelligence and national security officials.
Why it matters: The visit comes as Russian-backed Syrian forces gained ground in Idlib as a result of a weekslong offensive. The Syrian army claims it gained more than 20 villages and hilltops in the last rebel-held province and is approaching one of 12 Turkish observation posts in Syria’s northwest. This is the biggest such assault in more than three months. The push reportedly triggered a large civilian exodus. On Sunday, President Recep Tayyip Erdogan said Turkey could not handle a new influx of refugees and urged Moscow to stop its strikes. Turkey currently hosts more than 3.5 million Syrian refugees.