Will Russians travel to Turkey without passports?
Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu said that Ankara an Moscow has started talks to allow Russian nationals to travel to Turkey without a passport.
"We’ve started meetings in order to pave the way for the Russians to come to our country [only] with their ID cards, without a passport," the minister said.
"Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov will pay an official visit to the Turkish city of Antalya on March 28," the Milliyet newspaper cited Cavusoglu as saying.
The diplomat added that the Turkish government led by President Recep Tayyip Erdogan will arrive in Moscow on April 8 to open the mutual Year of Culture and Tourism between the two countries.
The maximum duration of stay in Turkey without a visa for Russian citizens was increased to 60 days from 30 days in May 2013, it was further increased to 90 days in April 2017.
A research fellow of the Institute for Oriental Studies of the Russian Academy of Sciences, Director of the Center for Modern Turkish Studies Amur Hajiyev, speaking with the correspondent of Vestnik Kavkaza, noted that since the popularity of Turkish resorts among Russians is quite high, Ankara's desire to make it easier for Russians to visit Turkish cities and resorts is understandable.
"Another thing is that considering the fact that negotiations on visa liberalization are underway for Turkish citizens, I think, a perspective is opening up for Turkish citizens as well. I think Ankara wants to make a goodwill gesture during the talks to show they are ready to lift the need for international passports in general. And in exchange, they will try to promote visa liberalization in relation to their citizens," the expert noted.
Professor of the Department of Business Process Management in Production and Service of RANEPA, Galina Dekhtyar, in turn, positively assessed the possible innovations, explaining that as a result people from the provinces, who often do not have passports, will be able to discover Turkey. "However, considering that Turkey does not offer very cheap options, those who have enough money to visit it, will be able to obtain an international passport," she noted.
"When there are three or six months left until the expiration of a passport, you can’t visit some countries. And in this case, the person will be able to visit Turkey without any problems, even if the passport is handed over to receive a new one," the professor of the Department of Business Process Management in Production and Service explained.
"Of course, this is a positive thing. So, most likely, the tourist flow to Turkey will increase," Galina Dekhtyar summarized.