Jakarta, CNBC Indonesia – Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan will soon visit Russia for talks with President Vladimir Putin to revive the Black Sea grain deal which could be used as a springboard for broader Ukraine peace talks.
Erdogan’s ruling party spokesman Omer Celik told reporters the meeting would take place in the Russian Black Sea resort city of Sochi and focus on preventing an imminent “food crisis”.
“As you know, (Erdogan) will be visiting Sochi soon,” Celik said in televised remarks. AFPTuesday (29/8/2023).
Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov said the meeting was being prepared “intensively” but did not give a time or place for the talks.
Meanwhile, Erdogan has used his good relations with Moscow and Kyiv to try to bring the two sides into formal peace talks.
He last met Putin in person in the Kazakh capital, Astana, last October.
The two also held a teleconference in April that inaugurated the Russian-built nuclear power plant the night before Erdogan was re-elected to his final term.
Turkey, a NATO member, helped negotiate the only major agreement signed by the warring sides since its February 2022 invasion – an agreement to ship grain from three Ukrainian ports across the Black Sea.
Russia and Ukraine are major grain exporters and their initial agreement helped lower global food prices that contribute to hunger in Africa and parts of the Middle East.
Earlier, Moscow canceled the UN-backed agreement last month citing its non-compliance with provisions aimed at easing exports of Russian agricultural products and fertilizers.
Russia has since launched repeated attacks on Ukraine’s port infrastructure and warned that it may regard any ship in the Black Sea as a military target.
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