Turkiye, Ukraine, Russia foreign ministers' meeting kicks off


The foreign ministers of Turkiye, Ukraine, and Russia met on Thursday to reach lasting peace as the Russia-Ukraine war enters its 15th day.

The high-level tripartite meeting began at 1100 AM local (0800 GMT) amid the Antalya Diplomacy Forum in Turkiye.

Prior to the meeting on Wednesday, Ukrainian Minister Dmytro Kuleba on social media voiced hope for "talks in good faith, not from a propaganda perspective, but really with the task of finding a solution on how to end the war waged by Russia."

Separately, Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan on Wednesday also expressed hope for the meeting to open doors for a permanent cease-fire.

Positions of both sides

Moscow has various conditions to end the war in Ukraine.

It wants Ukraine to amend its constitution to state unequivocally that Kyiv will not join any military alliance and that Crimea is Russian territory.

In February 2019, Ukraine's parliament approved amendments to the constitution that enshrine Ukraine's desire to join NATO.

Kyiv wants the war on its territory to end and Russian troops to completely withdraw from Ukrainian soil, including Crimea and Donbas.

The first round of negotiations took place on Feb. 28 in Gomel, Belarus near the Ukrainian border and lasted five hours.

The second round took place on March 3 and the third on March 7, both in the Brest region of Belarus.

Russia announced early Monday that it would declare a "temporary" cease-fire in the Ukrainian capital Kyiv and the cities of Mariupol, Kharkiv, and Sumy from 10 a.m. local time (0700GMT) to ensure the evacuation of civilians.

Russia's war on Ukraine, which began on Feb. 24, has drawn international condemnation, led to financial sanctions on Moscow, and spurred an exodus of global companies from Russia.

At least 516 civilians have been killed and 908 others injured in Ukraine so far, according to UN figures, with the real toll feared to be higher.