Moscow-Istanbul flights sold out amid Putin’s military mobilisation

Russians have purchased all direct flights between Moscow and Istanbul for the next three days following Russian military's partial mobilization announced by President Vladimir Putin, Middle East Eye reported on Wednesday.

Turkish Airlines have sold all direct flights from Moscow to Istanbul until Sunday and the cheapest flight costs 81,000 roubles ($1,340), Middle East Eye reported.

A relatively low-cost Turkish airliner, Pegasus only had one available flight on Saturday, which costs $1,599.

All economy seats have already been sold out resulting in only business class available for customers.

President Putin on Wednesday announced a partial mobilization of 300,000 reservists after Russia's invasion of Ukraine has come to a deadlock and Ukraine has introduced an influential counteroffensive in recent weeks.

The most recent Russian exodus arrives as those who are qualified to serve as a reservist are worried that they will not be allowed to leave Russia.

Ukrainian forces had regained complete control of the village of Bilohorivka and were preparing to recapture all of Luhansk province from Russian forces.

After a meeting with Putin last week in Uzbekistan, Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan revealed that the Kremlin "wants to end the war as soon as possible".

The Turkish President has managed to maintain ties with Moscow and Kyiv since the start of the Russian invasion on February 24.

Thousands of Russians have moved to Turkey since Moscow launched its invasion of Ukraine in February. They are purchasing houses in Istanbul and southern Turkey to obtain Turkish citizenship. Russians can enter Turkey without a visa.

The Turkish statistics agency said that nearly 4,900 Russians had purchased houses in Turkey between February and June 2022, Middle East Eye reported.

US Treasury Deputy Secretary Wally Adeyemo warned Turkish authorities in Ankara in June not to involve in any illicit financing, Middle East Eye said.

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