"Meeting achieved 'most meaningful progress' since start of negotiations"
Foreign Minister Mevlüt Çavuloğlu held a press conference after face-to-face talks between the Russian and Ukrainian delegations ended in Istanbul on Tuesday.
The fresh round of negotiations lasted for three hours, and Russian and Ukrainian negotiators later held separate press briefings to inform the world about the outcome.
While Ukraine has called for eight countries, including Turkiye, to be guarantors in a possible peace deal; Russia announced it will significantly decrease military activities in the direction of Ukrainian cities of Kyiv and Chernihiv to increase trust for future negotiations.
Russia sent troops into Ukraine in what it called a “special military operation” on Feb. 24. The war has met international outrage and Western countries have implemented tough financial sanctions on Moscow.
Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu said "today’s meeting was the most meaningful progress since the start of negotiations."
He added that "the top priority is to achieve a cease-fire as soon as possible and pave the way for a permanent political solution."
Earlier, President Recep Tayyip Erdogan reiterated his call for a cease-fire, saying: “We believe that a just peace will have no losers, and a prolonged conflict is not in anyone’s interest.”
Turkiye has won widespread praise for its efforts to end the war, helped by its unique position in having friendly relations with both Russia and Ukraine.
On March 10, it hosted the Russian and Ukrainian foreign ministers in the southern resort city of Antalya, the highest-level meeting of the two sides since the war began.