Russian Foreign Minister to Attend Turkey Diplomacy Forum: Ministries

Wed Feb 28 2024
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ISTANBUL: Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov is set to participate in the Antalya Diplomacy Forum (ADF) in southern Turkey starting Friday, both Russian and Turkish government officials confirmed. This announcement comes amidst growing criticism directed at Ankara for its support of Moscow during the ongoing Ukraine war.

The Antalya Diplomacy Forum, established in 2021, serves as a platform for policymakers, businessmen, researchers, and academics to engage in discussions on diplomacy, policy, and business.

Russian Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Maria Zakharova stated on Wednesday that Lavrov will hold talks with his Turkish counterpart Hakan Fidan during the forum, a confirmation reiterated by Turkish ministry spokesman Oncu Keceli to AFP.

Russian Foreign Minister’s Visit to Turkey

Lavrov’s participation in the ADF follows his previous attendance in 2022, shortly after Russia’s invasion of Ukraine. His last visit to Turkey was in April of the previous year, where he met with Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan in Ankara.

Turkey, situated alongside Ukraine and Russia bordering the Black Sea, has maintained diplomatic ties with both sides amidst the conflict. It has facilitated the export of Ukrainian grain by sea through a secure corridor under the UN’s supervision. However, Turkey has also faced criticism for allegedly aiding Russia in circumventing certain Western sanctions.

In the latest round of sanctions unveiled by the White House last week, sixteen Turkish entities were targeted. Washington accused these individuals and companies of contributing to Russia’s industrial support and bolstering Moscow’s capacity to wage war against Ukraine.

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