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Turkey’s Fidan to visit Russia as Ukraine's grain deal, Syria talks stall

Ankara’s efforts to revive the Black Sea grain deal and stalled high level talks between Ankara and Damascus are expected to be high on the agenda of the talks between top Russian and Turkish diplomats.
Turkish Foreign Minister Hakan Fidan visits the Memory Wall of Fallen Defenders of Ukraine during his official visit in Kyiv, on August 25, 2023, the Independence Day of Ukraine, amid the Russian invasion of Ukraine. (Photo by GLEB GARANICH / POOL / AFP) (Photo by GLEB GARANICH/POOL/AFP via Getty Images)

ANKARA — Turkish Foreign Minister Hakan Fidan is set to travel to Moscow on Thursday, as Ankara ramps up its efforts to convince Russia to return to a key Black Sea deal that allowed Ukrainian foodstuff, particularly its grain shipments, to reach world markets.

The Turkish Foreign Ministry announced on Wednesday that Fidan would hold talks with Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov and a number of senior officials to discuss bilateral, regional and global developments during the two-day visit. 

The Fidan-Lavrov talks will lay the groundwork for the upcoming meeting between Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan and Russian leader Vladimir Putin, expected to be held next week in Sochi. The Lavrov-Fidan meeting will mark the first one-on-one talks between the two chief diplomats following the Turkish foreign minister's appointment to his new post in June.

Earlier this week, Erdogan’s ruling Justice and Development Party spokesperson Omer Celik voiced hope that the two leaders’ meeting would lead to a new stage in efforts to revive the deal

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