Serbia and Turkey have reached an agreement to start direct commercial flights between the two countries' capitals, the Serbian ambassador said on Friday.
In a statement, Zoran Markovic said the flights will be operated by AnadoluJet, a brand of Turkish flag carrier Turkish Airlines, twice a week starting late December.
"This is a significant milestone, not only from a commercial standpoint and for a further increase in the already vibrant and ever increasing exchange of tourist visits, but for the relations between our two nations and deeper interaction between our citizens," he said.
He added that "it will foster new opportunities for both Turkish and Serbian citizens to appreciate the kinship and common historical and social links that go back for centuries."
Markovic said the flights will offer to discover and experience natural wonders, rich cultures and gastronomy of the two countries, as well as open an important tourist market, recalling that Ankara provides easier access to Central Anatolia, especially Cappadocia.
"Such a perspective could hopefully increase the number of weekly flights from the initial two to much more," he said. "This will also surely open up new possibilities for furthering our ever increasing economic interaction and enhancing the upward trend that we have witnessed for over a decade."
The ambassador also expressed the hope for passport-free travel between Turkey and Serbia. "A further impetus to our common goal will be the successful conclusion of the ongoing discussions on the introduction of passport-free travel between citizens of Serbia and Turkey, which will hopefully come to fruition very soon," he said.