Erdogan urges Putin to declare ‘unilateral ceasefire’ in Ukraine

Erdogan urges Putin to declare ‘unilateral ceasefire’ in Ukraine

The Turkish presidency stated on Thursday that President Recep Tayyip Erdogan spoke by phone with his Russian counterpart Vladimir Putin and advised him that peace efforts in Ukraine should be aided by a “unilateral ceasefire and a vision for a just conclusion.”

Since Russian military invaded Ukraine in February, Erdogan and Putin have spoken on the phone frequently. Turkey served as mediator alongside the UN, in order to arrange a settlement authorizing grain exports from Ukrainian ports.

“President Erdogan said calls for peace and negotiations should be supported by a unilateral ceasefire and a vision for a fair solution,” the readout said. It also added that Erdogan again reminded Putin of the positive outcomes of the grains corridor deal.

This follows a call earlier on Thursday by Russia’s spiritual leader, Patriarch Kirill, for an Orthodox Christmas truce this week.

Later on Thursday, Erdogan will speak with Volodymyr Zelensky, the president of Ukraine. He has attempted to get Putin and Zelensky to Turkey, for a peace meeting.

Read more: Erdogan says it would be “premature” for Turkey to stop buying Russian arms

However, the Kremlin said on Thursday Putin told Erdogan Russia was open to dialogue over Ukraine, but that Kyiv would have to accept the loss of territories claimed by Russia.

Putin also “acknowledged the destructive role of the West; pumping weapons into Kyiv, providing information and guidance”, the Kremlin said.

Additionally, Putin told Erdogan that all the barriers to “Russian exports of food and fertilisers should be lifted”.

The presidents also discussed a number of energy issues, including the creation of a gas hub in Turkey. They also talked about the construction of the Akkuyu nuclear power plant, which is being built with Russia.


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