Russian President Vladimir Putin met his Turkish counterpart Recep Tayyip Erdogan at the Black Sea resort of Sochi on Tuesday, hours before a ceasefire between Turkish and Kurdish forces in northern Syria is set to expire.

 Iran Press/ Middle East: Kremlin said in a statement that Putin and Erdogan's talks will focus on "normalizing the situation" in northeast Syria, Iran Press reported.

"The situation in the region is very critical," Putin told Erdogan as talks began in Sochi.

He added: "The good relations between Russia and Turkey will let us find an answer to even the most difficult questions." 

The US-brokered truce is set to expire at 19:00 GMT on Tuesday.

Turkey has agreed to a 120-hour pause in hostilities to allow Kurdish-led fighters considered by Ankara as 'terrorists' to withdraw from the border area. 

Turkey launched its offensive, dubbed 'Operation Peace Spring' on October 9, aiming to create a safe-zone cleared of the Kurdish People's Protection Units (YPG).

Ankara considers the YPG an extension of the Kurdistan Workers Party (PKK), which waged an armed struggle for autonomy against the Turkish state for decades. 

Ankara also wants to resettle some of the 3.6 million Syrian refugees it currently hosts inside the so-called safe zone. 


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