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Turkey Urges Russia to End Conflict in Ukraine

Turkey offered to mediate negotiations between Russia and Ukraine.

Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu. Saeima (CC BY-SA 2.0)

Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu asked Russian counterpart Sergei Lavrov to end the military operation in Ukraine during a phone call on Saturday, a Turkish diplomatic source said.

Ankara has repeatedly called the Russian invasion of Ukraine "unacceptable."

Cavusoglu told Lavrov that further escalation of military tensions would not benefit anyone, the source, who wished to remain anonymous, said.

Turkey had offered to mediate between Moscow and Kyiv.

Cavusoglu also reiterated Turkey's "readiness to host negotiations that could take place between the Russian Federation and Ukraine," according to the source.

Turkey has found itself in a balancing act between Russia and Ukraine, with which it has friendly ties. Ankara is highly dependent on Russia for energy supplies.

The Council of Europe on Friday said it was suspending all representatives of Russia from the pan-European rights body over Moscow's attack against Ukraine.

Turkey abstained during the vote.

In a televised interview late on Friday, Cavusoglu said: "We don't want to cut off the dialogue" with Russia.

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