Erdogan calls for shipping Russian grains, fertilizers via grain corridor

“One of the most important possible next steps is to bring (to the markets) grains from Russia,” Erdogan said here on Friday while referring to the UN-backed deal that allowed unimpeded passage of ships carrying foodstuff through the Black Sea.

“So far, it has been mostly grains from Ukraine. Fertilizers from Russia are needed to bring some prosperity to the poorer, developing nations,” Xinhua news agency quoted the President as saying.

According to Erdogan, more than 4 million tonnes of grain have so far been exported from Ukrainian ports as part of the grain deal.

On July 22, Ukraine and Russia separately signed a deal with Turkey and the UN in Istanbul to resume food and fertilizer shipments from Ukrainian ports to international markets via the Black Sea.

The deal came into effect on August 1.

Also addressing a recent prisoner swap deal between Ukraine and Russia, Erdogan said 200 of those are currently “guests” in Turkey.

“Among them was someone (Russian President vladimir) Putin insisted on. We have already seen that person’s return to Russia,” he said, without giving further details.

Erdogan earlier said the exchange under Turkey’s mediation was an essential step toward ending the Ukraine-Russia war.

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