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Russia and Ukraine: Talks have begun

About four and a half weeks after the Russian invasion of Ukraine, delegations from Ukraine and Russia met for a new round of negotiations in Istanbul.

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan welcomed negotiators at the President’s Office in Dolmabahce earlier this morning. Then the two delegations met for talks. Erdogan said it was up to both sides to end the “tragedy”. Everyone would benefit from an immediate ceasefire.

REUTERS/Murat Cetinmohurdar/PPO

Negotiators from Ukraine and Russia met three times in the Belarusian border area. The talks were then held via video link.

difficult conversations

Erdogan, who has good relations with Kyiv and Moscow, was optimistic last night. However, negotiations between the Ukrainian and Russian delegations proved very difficult.

Kyiv wants the withdrawal of Russian forces and security guarantees. Moscow is demanding that Ukraine abandon NATO and recognize the breakaway eastern Ukrainian separatist regions as separate states and Crimea on the Black Sea, which was annexed in 2014, as part of Russia.

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