Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan promised on Monday a very important declaration after a meeting with his Russian counterpart Vladimir Putin in Sochi that will touch on reactivating the Ukraine grain export agreement.
“I believe that the message that we will convey during the press conference that follows the meeting will be of great importance to the world, especially the developing African countries,” Erdogan said, shortly after his arrival in the Russian city on the Black Sea.
The agreement, which was reached in the summer of 2022 under the auspices of Türkiye and the United Nations, allowed the export of Ukrainian grain through safe passages in the Black Sea.
However, last July, Russia terminated the implementation of this agreement, in a step that was followed by an escalation of tension in the Black Sea region, and raised growing concern about food prices.
Putin informed his Turkish counterpart of his willingness to discuss reactivating the agreement.
“I know you intend to raise the issue of the grain agreement,” Putin said at the start of the meeting… We are open to talks”.
The Russian President had previously considered that the terms of the agreement had not been adhered to in terms of allowing Russia to export fertilizers and agricultural products, considering that the Western countries that have imposed sanctions on Russia since the start of its invasion of Ukraine in February 2022 sought to exploit the agreement for the purposes of political blackmail.
Since the end of the agreement, the two parties to the conflict have escalated their attacks in the Black Sea.
Moscow has warned that it will consider any ship sailing to or from Ukraine a potential military target.
Kiev has become dependent on land roads and a shallow river port, which greatly limits the quantities of grain exported, but it has also resorted to a new corridor across the Black Sea, despite the Russian threat.
Ukraine announced this week that four more cargo ships had sailed through the corridor, which mostly bypasses international waters and remains within the control of NATO members, making vessels using it less vulnerable to possible Russian targeting.