Turkey’s Erdogan urges Russia’s Putin not to take steps that escalate tensions

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan called Wednesday on his Russian counterpart Vladimir Putin not to escalate tensions, after Moscow struck facilities vital for grain shipments from Ukraine.

Erdogan told Putin during a phone call that no steps should be taken that would escalate tensions, emphasizing the significance of a grain deal that he called a “bridge for peace,” according to the Turkish leader’s office.

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The accord, brokered by Turkey and the United Nations, allowed Ukraine to export grain via its Black Sea ports, but it collapsed last month after Moscow withdrew.

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