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Türkiye works to revitalize Ukraine’s grain business: Erdoğan to Zelenskyy

President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan told Ukrainian President Zelenskyy that work has begun on reviving the Black Sea Grain Initiative, when they met on the sidelines of the NATO summit in Washington on Thursday.

Erdoğan told Zelenskyy that Turkey continued its efforts for a just peace and is ready to take all initiatives, including mediation, to ensure peace.

The two leaders discussed the course of the war between Ukraine and Russia, as well as regional and global issues, the presidential communications directorate said.

Ukraine has been defending itself against a full-scale Russian invasion for more than two years. For its campaign, Kiev has received massive international support, mainly from Western allies in the form of arms deliveries, humanitarian aid and sanctions against Russia.

Türkiye was a key player in the now-suspended deal that allowed the safe passage of Ukrainian grain shipments via the Black Sea despite the blockade of its ports after Moscow launched its invasion in late February 2022.

The deal, brokered by Ankara and the United Nations in July 2022, expired after Moscow refused to renew it. Ankara has stepped up efforts to try to revive the initiative.

Türkiye has positioned itself as an intermediary in the Russia-Ukraine conflict and Erdoğan was a key player in brokering the Black Sea Grain Initiative.

Moscow pulled out of the deal on July 17, accusing the West of blocking its own grain and fertilizer exports, and has since attacked Ukrainian agriculture and port infrastructure. It has said it was ready to return to the deal once an accompanying deal on Russia was implemented.

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