Ankara, January 15 – Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan said that while “everyone attacked Russia,” Turkey maintained and preserved its relations with Russian leader Vladimir Putin.
Turkey has repeatedly stated at the official level that it does not intend to join the sanctions against Russia.
“While everyone was attacking Russia, we did not do that. On the contrary, we maintained relations with Mr. Putin in the same way as before,” Erdogan said at a meeting with young people in Muğla.
The Turkish leader once again reminded the Russian president’s proposal to send free foodstuffs to countries in need.
“Putin said let me send the grain for free, and we said we will turn it into flour and send it to the poor countries,” Erdogan said.
Earlier, Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan said he had agreed with Russian President Vladimir Putin on the possibility of free Russian grain and fertilizers being sent to hungry African countries. Putin indicated in early September that the West was exporting the majority of Ukrainian grain to its own countries, not to countries in need in Africa. He stated that Moscow is ready to provide the poorest countries for free with the amount of whole grain allocated to them under the grain deal.
The grain deal, which was signed on July 22 by representatives of Russia, Turkey, Ukraine and the United Nations, includes the export of Ukrainian grain, food and fertilizers across the Black Sea from three ports, including Odessa. The contract expired on November 18, but meant an automatic 120-day extension in the absence of objections from both parties. The deal itself is an integral part of the overall deal, which provides for, among other things, the liberalization of Russian exports of food and fertilizers – Moscow has indicated that this is exactly what has not been met. At the same time, there were assurances from the United Nations that restrictions would be lifted.