U.N. chief Guterres heading to Turkey ahead of Moscow, Kyiv visits

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FILE PHOTO: News conference at the U.N. Headquarters, in New York City

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - United Nations Secretary-General Antonio Guterres will visit Ankara before heading to Moscow next week to meet Russian President Vladimir Putin and then to Ukraine for talks with President Volodymyr Zelenskiy, a U.N. statement said on Saturday.

Guterres will visit the Turkish capital on Monday, where he will be received by President Tayyip Erdogan, the statement said. The U.N. aid chief, Martin Griffiths, said on April 18 that Turkey was a valuable host for humanitarian talks between Ukraine and Russia.

Eri Kaneko, Guterres' associate spokesperson, told a news briefing on Friday that Guterres would head to Moscow on Tuesday and meet Putin as well as have a working meeting and lunch with Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov, hoping to discuss what can be done to bring peace to Ukraine.

The United Nations also said on Friday that Guterres would meet with Zelenskiy on Thursday, Foreign Minister Dmytro Kuleba and staff at UN agencies to discuss the scaling up of humanitarian assistance efforts.

(Reporting by Patricia Zengerle; Editing by Leslie Adler)

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