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Media: Putin plans to visit Turkey in February to discuss Ukraine

by Nate Ostiller and The Kyiv Independent news desk January 29, 2024 3:49 PM 1 min read
Russian President Vladimir Putin meets with Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan on the sidelines of the Shanghai Cooperation Organization leaders' summit in Samarkand, Uzbekistan, on Sept. 16, 2022. (Getty Images)
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Russian President Vladimir Putin is making preparations to visit Turkey in February and meet with Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan, where the two leaders will discuss Ukraine and other issues, the Russian state-run media outlet TASS announced on Jan. 29, citing Yuri Ushakov, an advisor to Putin.

Putin's international visits have been curtailed since the International Criminal Court (ICC) issued an arrest warrant in March 2023 for his role in the deportations of Ukrainian children. Turkey is not party to the ICC's Rome Statute, meaning it is under no obligation to detain Putin.

Turkey, positioning itself as a mediator between the belligerents of the war, played a crucial role in brokering the grain deal that allowed for the resumption of maritime trade out of Ukrainian ports in July 2022.

Since the agreement's collapse in July 2023 following Russia's unilateral exit, Ankara has been in contact both with Kyiv and Moscow, discussing the options for its restoration.

Erdogan visited Russia in September 2023 and met with Putin to discuss the grain deal and other issues.

Ushakov told TASS that the two leaders will discuss Ukraine at the upcoming talks, including a potential peace settlement, but did not go into any more detail.

Except for unsuccessful talks during the spring of 2022, there have been no direct peace negotiations between Ukraine and Russia. Kyiv said categorically that a full Russian withdrawal is a condition for any talks.

Russia has signaled in recent months that it would be willing to discuss a potential peace settlement to the full-scale war in Ukraine.

Few in the West and Ukraine believe that such negotiations would be in good faith, as Putin has also recently reiterated his maximalist goals for the war, emphasizing that they have remained the same since February 2022.

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