ANKARA, June 11. /TASS/. Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan said on Friday that he expects a Russian delegation to arrive in Antalya to discuss tourism-related issues.
"A delegation from Russia is arriving in Antalya. Issues related to tourism will be discussed. I believe that after that we will be able to quickly go on the attack in the direction of tourism," he said in Istanbul referring to the revival of international tourism in Turkey. The president did not give the expected date for the Russian delegation’s visit.
Erdogan added that Turkey’s Ministry of Culture and Tourism and himself had contacts with the UK as one of the main sources of tourists for Turkey and with other countries as well. In the context of the resumption of tourism and the lifting of restrictions, he also noted that about 32 million people in Turkey had been vaccinated against COVID-19. "New batches of vaccines are arriving, including BioNTech. As you know, we have an agreement with China on vaccine shipments," he said.
On June 10, Turkey’s Minister of Culture and Tourism Mehmet Nuri Ersoy said that "negotiations with Russia [on resuming flights] were conducted positively." He also noted Russia’s representatives planned to analyze the situation on the spot, that is, arrive in Turkey and familiarize themselves with the anti-epidemic measures taken by Ankara.
On May 31, Russia’s anti-coronavirus crisis center said that Moscow was extending the suspension of flights with Turkey and Tanzania until June 21 because of the epidemiological situation in those countries. Russia restricted air traffic with Turkey due to another outbreak of COVID-19 from April 15 to June 1. The number of flights was reduced to two per week on a reciprocal basis. These flights are operated by Russia’s Aeroflot and Turkish Airlines.