Foreign ministers from Russia and Ukraine will meet in Turkey on Thursday in the first high-level talks between the two countries since Moscow invaded its neighbour, with Ankara hoping they could mark a turning point in the raging conflict.
Ukrainian Foreign Minister Dmytro Kuleba has tempered expectations for a ceasefire agreement or other results from the meeting with Russian counterpart Sergei Lavrov, on the sidelines of a diplomacy forum in Turkey’s southern province of Antalya.
Russia’s invasion has uprooted more than 2 million people in what the United Nations calls the fastest humanitarian crisis in Europe since World War 2.
Nato member Turkey had repeatedly offered to mediate between the sides and will host their top two diplomats after weeks of mediation attempts by world powers.
Kuleba urged Lavrov to approach the talks “in good faith, not from a propagandistic perspective.”
“I will say frankly that my expectations of the talks are low,” Kuleba said in a video statement on Wednesday. “We are interested in a ceasefire, liberating our territories and the third point is to resolve all humanitarian issues.”
Moscow has said it is ready for talks with Ukraine, but that all of its demands — including that Kyiv takes a neutral position a