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Turkish foreign minister to visit Russia on Thursday

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Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov will host his Turkish counterpart for a two-day visit beginning Thursday, Moscow has announced, after Ankara’s top diplomat had talks with Ukrainian officials last week, Agence France-Presse reported.

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan is also due to visit Russia soon for talks with President Vladimir Putin on reviving a deal allowing safe grain shipments across the Black Sea.

Maria Zakharova, Russia’s foreign ministry spokeswoman, told reporters that Lavrov and Hakan Fidan would discuss “the situation in the region, particularly in Ukraine, Syria, Libya, Transcaucasia.”

Erdoğan has used his good relations with Moscow and Kyiv to try to bring the two sides into formal peace talks.

NATO member Turkey helped negotiate the only major agreement signed by the warring sides since the start of the conflict last year — a deal to ship grain from three Ukrainian ports across the Black Sea.

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