Erdogan Again Urges Putin For Leaders’ Summit in Istanbul To Solve Ukrainian Crisis

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan on Tuesday once again urged his Russian counterpart Vladimir Putin to hold a summit with Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy in Turkey to solve the Ukrainian crisis.

The Turkish Presidential Press Service said in a statement that during a telephone conversation, Erdogan told Putin that the “continuation of the positive momentum achieved in the Istanbul talks” to reach peace in Ukraine is in the interest of everyone.

Erdogan also stressed the importance of ensuring a ceasefire, operating humanitarian corridors, and safely carrying out evacuations.

Erdogan also reiterated Turkey’s willingness to “elevate the Istanbul process” and host a meeting of the Ukrainian and Russian leaders.

“The meeting of the Ukrainian and Russian presidents is an important threshold for negotiations between the two countries,” Erdogan told Putin.

The phone call came one day after United Nations Secretary-General Antonio Guterres had met with Erdogan in Ankara and then departed for Moscow, and from there he will fly to Kyiv in a bid to mediate a peace deal between Russia and Ukraine.

Erdogan has long been engaging with both Putin and Zelenskyy and tried to play a mediator role to end the conflict.

Turkey has good ties with both countries, and previously, Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov and Ukrainian Foreign Minister Dmytro Kuleba met in a resort town of Turkey’s southern province of Antalya on March 10.

Erdogan’s call was the first high-level talk between Moscow and Kyiv since Russia launched a special military operation in Ukraine on Feb. 24.

The negotiation teams of Russia and Ukraine also had a face-to-face meeting in Istanbul on March 29, however, the meetings have not created any resolutions. 

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