Russian President Vladimir Putin may visit Turkey in late April or early May, Russian state-run RIA news agency reported on Feb. 7, citing a source in Ankara.
Earlier on Feb. 7, Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov said that preparations for the meeting between Putin and Turkish President Tayyip Erdogan were continuing.
A Turkish official told Reuters last week that Putin would visit Turkey, a NATO member, on Feb. 12.
Turkey, which shares a maritime border with both Ukraine and Russia in the Black Sea, has sought to maintain good ties with both nations since Moscow's full-scale invasion. It has provided military support to Kyiv and voiced support for its territorial integrity, but also opposes sanctions on Russia.
Ankara has sought to convince Russia to return to the Black Sea Grain Initiative, brokered by the United Nations and Turkey to provide protected exports from Ukrainian ports, after Moscow withdrew last July following a year of implementation. While Kyiv has said talks were underway for a revival of the deal, Moscow has said it was not interested in reinstating it.
Last week, Turkish Foreign Minister Hakan Fidan said Erdoğan would discuss a new mechanism to allow Ukrainian grain exports through the Black Sea with his Russian counterpart Vladimir Putin during his upcoming visit to Turkey
Turkey has close economic ties with Russia, particularly in tourism, gas supplies, grain and other agricultural trade, that make Western countries uneasy. However, the two have also been at loggerheads over conflicts in Syria and Libya, where they back opposing sides, as well as over tensions between Azerbaijan and Armenia in the South Caucasus.