Flights from Russia to the occupied territories will start in November via Antalya, according to the pro-government Turkish newspaper Yeni Safak, which reports that Turkish President Tayyip Erdogan will be on the first flight.
The same newspaper sources say the flights will take place every day.
"The fact that a Russian plane will land in Ercan can be interpreted as a change of axis in Russian policy"
Yeni Safak reported that this step was taken after the US lifted the arms embargo on the Republic of Cyprus and says that experts in Turkey believe that this move by Russia is in retaliation against the US. Professor Ata Atun told Yeni Safak that "if the US has taken a step, Russia should take a step as well." According to Ata Atun, Russia must find a formula for direct flights to the illegal airport in occupied Cyprus, but until this formula is found, flights will be operated via Antalya. "Turkey is Turkey's only ally in the NATO bloc. Russia does not want to lose Turkey," he argues.
Associate Professor Emete Gyozugiuzeli says that a flight had been made from Azerbaijan in the past but it was blocked. "The fact that a Russian plane will land in Ercan can be interpreted as a change of axis in Russian policy" on Cyprus, he said.
According to Yeni Safak, diplomatic sources believe that this flight from Moscow means that Russia recognizes at least partially the pseudo-state. Member of the Turkish Travel Agents Association (Türsab) Ali Bilir stated that "this is a pleasant development. The 'TRNC' will have direct tourists from Russia. This will soften the way other countries see 'TRNC' somewhat. If Russia recognizes 'TRNC' in the future, then other countries will also recognize it."