Pretoria, 17 July 2023 (TDI): President Vladimir Putin of the Russian Federation and President Cyril Ramaphosa of the Republic of South Africa engaged in a fruitful telephone conversation at the initiative of the South African side.

The South African leader expressed his gratitude for the warm welcome and constructive discussions held during the visit of African leaders and representatives to St Petersburg in June.

During their conversation, Cyril Ramaphosa extended his appreciation to his counterpart for their productive talks during the visit of the African delegation, on potential solutions to the situation surrounding Ukraine.

Both leaders agreed to continue exploring the African Peace Initiative in conjunction with the upcoming Russia-Africa summit, scheduled to take place at the end of July.

Highlighting the importance of bilateral relations, Vladimir Putin and Cyril Ramaphosa also agreed to hold a separate meeting during the summit.

This dedicated session will provide an opportunity for a comprehensive discussion on matters concerning both countries’ bilateral and international agendas.

Additionally, President Ramaphosa shared updates on the preparations for the forthcoming BRICS summit, set to be hosted in Johannesburg from August 22 – 24.

The BRICS platform, consisting of Brazil, Russia, India, China, and South Africa, serves as a crucial forum for fostering cooperation and addressing global challenges.

With regard to the Istanbul package agreements, President Putin emphasized that the obligations outlined in the Russia-UN memorandum, which aimed to remove barriers hindering the export of Russian food and fertilizers, have not been fulfilled.

Furthermore, the primary objective of the agreement, which was to supply grain to countries in need including those on the African continent, remains unimplemented.

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Both leaders reasserted their mutual commitment to enhancing cooperation in various fields.

The discussion affirmed the dedication of Russia and South Africa to strengthening bilateral ties and fostering collaboration on regional and international matters of common interest.