MOSCOW, November 1. /TASS/. Russian President Vladimir Putin and his Turkish counterpart Recep Tayyip Erdogan have held a telephone conversation to discuss the situation involving the grain deal, the Kremlin’s press service said on Tuesday.
"There was a detailed exchange of views on issues related to the current situation involving the implementation of the agreements reached with the participation of the Turkish side on the export of grain from the Black Sea ports," the news release says.
Putin briefed his counterpart on why Russia had suspended participation in the grain deal.
"It was stressed that the Kiev regime, with support from its Western patrons, used the humanitarian shipping corridor, created for the transportation of Ukrainian grain, to carry out strikes against the infrastructure and ships of Russia’s Black Sea Fleet in Sevastopol, which were responsible for ensuring the safe operation of the route in question," the Kremlin said.
The Russian leader explained the conditions for the resumption of Russia's participation in this initiative.
"It is necessary to conduct thorough investigation into the circumstances of this incident, and also to secure Kiev’s real guarantees of strict observance of the Istanbul agreements, in particular, the non-use of the humanitarian corridor for military purposes. Only after that it would be possible to consider the resumption of the ‘Black Sea initiative’," the news release reads.
Putin also drew the attention of his Turkish counterpart to the fact that the second part of the package agreements to unblock the export of Russian farm produce and fertilizers to world markets had not been implemented. Also, he stressed that during the three months the agreements on the export of Ukrainian grain had been in effect the goal of ensuring the delivery of food to the neediest countries on a priority basis had not been achieved.
"In this context, Russia's readiness to supply significant amounts of grain and fertilizers to Africa free of charge was confirmed," the press service added.