Turkiye in close contact with Russia, Ukraine to help ease tensions: President Erdogan

Recep Tayyip Erdogan says he would speak to Russian president on possible trilateral meeting of Ukraine, Russia, Turkiye.

Turkiye in close contact with Russia, Ukraine to help ease tensions: President Erdogan

Turkiye is in close contact with both Russian and Ukrainian leaders to help ease tensions between the two countries, President Recep Tayyip Erdogan said on Wednesday.

Speaking to journalists on the presidential plane on his way back from the United Arab Emirates, Erdogan said he will speak to Russian President Vladimir Putin over the phone to learn about his views on a possible trilateral meeting of Turkiye, Russia, Ukraine.

“In our meeting with (Ukrainian President Volodymyr) Zelenskyy, he stated that he is open to a trilateral meeting in Istanbul or Ankara,” Erdogan added.

“We will try to follow the issue accordingly. A war bodes no good for the well-being of the region,” he stressed.

On Israeli President Isaac Herzog's upcoming visit to Turkiye in March, Erdogan said: “Such a step would be good for Turkiye-Israel relations.”

To another query, Turkiye's president said that his country “continues its positive dialogue with Saudi Arabia, and wants to take concrete steps in the coming period.”

UAE visit

On his two-day official visit to the UAE, Erdogan said he had "very productive" meetings with Abu Dhabi's Crown Prince Mohammed bin Zayed Al Nahyan.

"We discussed the joint steps we can take to further develop the relations between Turkiye and the United Arab Emirates," he said.

"We underlined our support for the security and stability of the United Arab Emirates," he stressed.

Noting that Turkiye and the UAE signed 13 agreements in various fields, including defense, trade, logistics, health, technology, and climate change, the president said: "I wish the agreements will be beneficial for our countries and region."

Tensions with Greece

On tensions with Greece, Erdogan said Turkiye will make the highest-level warning if Greece continues with its provocations.

"It is not possible for us to remain silent on the military activities carried out in violation of the agreements on the islands with a demilitarized status," he said.

"As a matter of fact, we have brought this issue to the agenda of the UN."

He also criticized Greece over the death of 19 migrants who were found frozen to death at the border.

"We will continue to inform Europeans about it," he said.

Libya conflict

Asked about the recent developments in Libya, Erdogan said it is out of the question that Turkiye is holding back in Libya, adding that all kinds of support will continue to be given to the country.

Stressing that Turkiye prefers to help the Libyan people to hold an election for “a prosperous and peaceful future”, he continued: “We want such an election that will bring a government the Libyan people really want and desire”.

Hüseyin Demir

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