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Zelensky, Erdogan discuss defense cooperation

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky and Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan have discussed bilateral cooperation in the defense sphere in a phone call, according to the website of the Ukrainian head of state.

Zelensky praised Turkey's continued support for Ukraine's territorial integrity and sovereignty, as well as its active involvement in the work of a new international mechanism - the Crimea Platform, the report said.

Zelensky thanked Erdogan for his condolences over the deaths of Ukrainian soldiers in the east of the country.

He also paid special attention to the release of Ukrainian citizens being illegally detained by Russia.

Zelensky and Erdogan exchanged their views on the security situation in the region, as well as on relevant initiatives to strengthen security in the Black Sea region.

Both presidents discussed cooperation in the defense sphere. They stated that the strategic partnership is already strengthening the armed forces of the two states. They noted the implementation of a number of important projects in the fields of aircraft construction and the development of the two countries' navies, as well as the prospects for deepening such cooperation.

Zelensky briefed Erdogan on the launch of the mass production of An-178 transport aircraft.

"I invite Turkey to join the circle of its customers," Zelensky said.

Both leaders noted their readiness to complete the preparation of the free trade agreement in the near future. They also paid attention to the implementation of the agreements reached on a number of bilateral projects, including the construction of housing for the Crimean Tatar people. Both parties also discussed cooperation in the energy sector, including ways to diversify energy supplies.

Both presidents agreed to hold the tenth meeting of the High-Level Strategic Council in Kyiv in February 2022. It was stressed that this important event should be preceded by thorough preparations, including the holding of the second meeting of the two countries' foreign and defense ministers in December this year.

op

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