Turkey, Russia take steps for reconciliation ahead of Erdoğan-Putin meeting

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ISTANBUL – On the evening of August 31, the newly built stadium in Antalya on Turkey’s Mediterranean coast will host a soccer match between the national teams of Turkey and Russia.

It is scheduled as a “friendly” match, although relations between the two countries have been far from living up to this adjective over the eight months since the downing of a Russian jet by Turkish aircraft in November last year.

However, with a reconciliation process between the two countries starting in June and gaining significant momentum through the visits of a number of Turkish cabinet members to Moscow last week and an upcoming meeting between the two countries’ presidents, there are sufficient grounds to expect this soccer game to herald the normalization of relations between Ankara and Moscow. Continue reading

China seeks ‘new chapter’ with Iran after sanctions end

“In cooperation with the Iranian side and by benefiting from the current favorable conditions, China is ready to upgrade the level of bilateral relations and cooperation so that a new chapter will start in bilateral relations,” Xi said after meeting with Iranian President Hassan Rouhani, according to Iranian state TV.

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China and Germany Strengthen Cooperation With Nigeria

As America grapples with the fiscal cliff, China and Germany are increasing their military presence in an African nation vital to global seaborne trade.

Just last August, the Chinese military had discussions with the Nigerian government to upgrade the Nigerian Navy. During the discussions, Chinese military attaché to Nigeria, Kang Honglin, pointed to the fact that China has already helped Nigeria set up an ammunition assembly line. He then went on to talk about China’s desire to provide the Nigerian Navy with both the training and equipment necessary to secure the Gulf of Guinea. Continue reading