Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov met his Ukrainian counterpart Dmytro Kuleba in Turkey on Thursday.
“The meeting has started,” Russian foreign ministry spokeswoman Maria Zakharova told reporters.
The meeting was brokered by Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu. Pictures of the meeting released by Zakharova showed the Russian and Ukrainians sitting opposite each other.
At the same time, civilians started leaving the Ukrainian city of Sumy through a “humanitarian corridor” on Thursday following an agreement on a local ceasefire, the regional governor said.
Several thousand people have left the besieged city this week under agreements with Russia, which invaded Ukraine on Feb. 24. People were also leaving the nearby settlements of Krasnopillya and Trostyanets, Governor Dmytro Zhyvytskyy said.
“The (evacuation) columns are leaving. The ceasefire has been agreed!” he said.