Editorial: Turkey, talks

Turkey’s top diplomat has said Ankara is working to bring the Ukrainian and Russian foreign ministers together again for talks. In an interview with Turkey’s A Haber channel, Mevlut Cavusoglu said the meeting could happen within two weeks. His comments came days after Turkey hosted Ukrainian and Russian negotiators for face-to-face talks in Istanbul. Cavusoglu said decisions taken during the talks had not fully been put into effect on the ground. After this meeting some decisions were taken, especially concerning the reduction of tensions, Cavusoglu said.

But we do not see these decisions being reflected on the field – for example, the removal of Russian soldiers from some areas. Asked about the presence of sanctioned Russian oligarch Roman Abramovich in the negotiations, Cavusoglu said the businessman was engaged in useful efforts to end the fighting. Abramovich has been sincerely making efforts to end the fighting since the first day of the war, he said. During the talks in Istanbul Tuesday, Ukraine set out a detailed framework for a peace deal under which the country would remain neutral but its security would be guaranteed by a group of third countries, including the US, Britain, France, Turkey, China and Poland.

Meanwhile, US Secretary of State Antony Blinken on Wednesday spoke with External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar to review regional priorities, worsening humanitarian situation in Ukraine and to promote free and open Indo-Pacific, his spokesperson said. The two leaders spoke to review regional priorities, including the worsening humanitarian situation in Ukraine and our shared efforts to promote a free, open, secure, and prosperous Indo-Pacific, in which the sovereignty and territorial integrity of all states is respected, State Department Spokesperson Ned Price said. Blinken has wrapped up a three-nation tour of the Middle East and North Africa on Wednesday, making an impassioned appeal to Algeria to limit ties with Russia.