The Kremlin reported that Erdogan praised Russia’s efforts to “further stabilize the situation” in the Karabakh conflict zone and ensure the implementation of Russian-brokered agreements that stopped last year’s Armenian-Azerbaijani war.
In a statement, it said Putin briefed Erdogan on his latest conversations with Armenian Prime Minister Nikol Pashinian and Azerbaijani President Ilham Aliyev. The Russian and Turkish leaders agreed on the “need to step up work on restoring the transport infrastructure in the South Caucasus,” added the statement.
Putin met with Pashinian in Moscow on Wednesday and spoke with Aliyev by phone the following day. The Russian president reportedly discussed with them the implementation of the ceasefire agreement brokered by him on November 9.
The agreement calls, among other things, for the restoration of transport links between Armenia and Azerbaijan. Putin, Pashinian and Aliyev decided to set up a trilateral task force for that purpose when they held a trilateral meeting in Moscow in January.
Later in January, Russia and Turkey opened a joint center in Azerbaijan to monitor the Karabakh ceasefire. The center operates independently from around 2,000 Russian peacekeepers deployed in Karabakh.
During the six-week war, Turkey supported the Azerbaijan with weapons and expert advice. It also reportedly recruited thousands of Syrian mercenaries and sent them to fight in Karabakh on the Azerbaijani side.