Russian President Vladimir Putin will make just his second international trip on Tuesday since invading Ukraine in February – and his first outside the borders of the former Soviet Union during that time.
Putin is on a visit to Iran, where he will meet Turkish President Recep Erdogan and Iranian leader Ebrahim Raisi.
This comes amid Ukrainian claims that more than 20 million tonnes of grain remain stuck in Ukraine due to Russia’s blockade of various Black Sea ports. Putin and Erdogan are expected to discuss the issue of grain export from Ukrainian ports, the Kremlin said ahead of the trip, according to state news agencies RIA Novosti and TASS.
“The work is very active. You know that on July 13 the first quadripartite meeting on cereals was held in Istanbul with the participation of representatives from Russia, Ukraine, Turkey and the UN. We are ready to continue working on this track, this work will continue,” said the assistant to the Russian president, Yuri Ushakov, during a press briefing quoted by RIA.
Meanwhile, Putin’s dealings with Iran have alerted Western officials as he prepares to step up ground offensives in eastern Ukraine after his troops seized the Luhansk region.
Recently Declassified US Intelligence noted according to White House officials.
“Russia turning to Iran for help speaks volumes to the extent to which the two nations, for their actions in different parts of the world, have been increasingly isolated by the international community,” he said. National Security Council Coordinator for Strategic Communications John Kirby told CNN. Last week.
Putin is expected to hold bilateral talks with the two leaders later on Tuesday.