Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan is optimistic about the imminent revival of the Black Sea grain deal, stating that it will “meet necessary expectations.” Speaking to reporters late Monday aboard the presidential plane en route from Russia, Erdogan emphasized the global priority of revitalizing the initiative and confirmed ongoing discussions with the UN.
Erdogan, who recently visited Sochi for talks with Russian President Vladimir Putin, revealed that the two leaders discussed the grain deal’s revival, among other topics. The deal, brokered by Türkiye and the UN last year, helped alleviate the global food crisis but was paused due to the Russia-Ukraine war that started in February 2022.
Türkiye advocates for resuming the deal by addressing identified deficiencies, arguing no better alternative offers a “sustainable, secure, and lasting” cooperative model.
Moscow had pulled out of the initiative in July, citing the West’s failure to meet obligations and logistical constraints.
Erdogan also mentioned that during the Sochi visit, Turkish Foreign Minister Hakan Fidan discussed a new UN-brokered package with his Russian counterpart Sergey Lavrov. This package aims to revitalize the stalled initiative.
Regarding Russia’s demands for revitalization, Erdogan listed two primary concerns: including Russian agricultural banks in the SWIFT system, currently barred due to sanctions, and ensuring proper insurance for ships involved in grain transport.
Erdogan expressed hope for a “just and lasting” resolution to the Russia-Ukraine conflict, reiterating Türkiye’s willingness to mediate.
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