UN chief calls Erdoğan to give update about Putin talks
U.N. Secretary-General Antonio Guterres called President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan to give an update on his talks with Russian President Vladimir Putin in Moscow, the Presidential Communications Directorate announced on April 27.
Guterres was in Ankara on April 24 to hold talks with Erdoğan before his trips to Moscow and Kiev. He was received by Putin on April 25, the day Erdoğan spoke with the Russian president over the phone. Guterres and Erdoğan exchanged views after the former’s trip to Moscow and before his scheduled trip to Ukraine to meet President Volodymyr Zelensky.
The international community is pressing the two sides for a ceasefire so that they can negotiate a deal to end the armed conflict and resolve growing humanitarian problems in Ukraine. Guterres also urged Moscow for the evacuation of civilians stranded in the areas where heavy clashes between Russian and Ukrainian armies continue.
In his phone conversation with Putin, Erdoğan also reiterated Ankara’s call for the resumption of peace talks in Istanbul as the continuation of the meetings that had taken place in Istanbul in early April. He told Putin Turkey would continue to make every effort to bring an end to the current state of affairs, which harms everyone, and to establish lasting peace.
Erdoğan meets minority leaders at iftar
In the meantime, Erdoğan hosted minority religious groups at an iftar dinner in the presidential palace late on April 26.
Among the participants at the iftar dinner were the Armenian Patriarch of Turkey Sahak Mashalian, Turkish Jews Chief Rabbi Isak Haleva, Syriac Orthodox Metropolitan Yusuf Cetin, Turkish Syriac-Catholic Church Patriarchal Vicar Orhan Canli, Deputy Patriarch of Armenian Catholic Community Levon Zekiyan and Kadıköy Greek Orthodox Metropolitan Emmanuel Adamakis.
Bedros Sirinoglu, chairman of the Union of Armenian Foundations; Herman Baliyan, deputy head of the Armenian Hospital; Ishak Ibrahimzadeh, co-chair of the Turkish Jewish Community; Konstantin Yuvanidis, president of the Balikli Greek Hospital Foundation; Sait Susin, head of the Istanbul-based Syriac Church Foundation; Munir Uckardes, president of the Syriac Catholic Community Foundation; and Antuan Sultanoglu, deputy chairman of the Armenian Catholic Surp Agop Foundation were also among the participants at the iftar dinner at the presidential complex in the capital Ankara.
Turkish Interior Minister Süleyman Soylu, Culture and Tourism Minister Mehmet Nuri Ersoy, and Ali Erbaş, the head of Turkey’s top religious body Diyanet, were also present.