DAKAR, June 2 (Xinhua) — The chairperson of the African Union (AU) and Senegalese President Macky Sall left Dakar on Thursday morning for Moscow at the invitation of his Russian counterpart, Vladimir Putin, announced the Senegalese presidency in a press release.

Accompanied by Moussa Faki Mahamat, chairperson of the AU Commission, he will meet with his host on Friday in Sochi, according to the press release. The visit is aimed at “freeing up stocks of cereals and fertilizers, the blockage of which particularly affects African countries”, and also easing the conflict between Ukraine and Russia. It is “in the same spirit” that the AU accepted the request of Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky to send a message to the pan-African organization via videoconference.

In March and April, Macky Sall had phone conversations separately with Putin and Zelensky. After Sochi, Sall will head for Accra in Ghana to take part in an extraordinary ECOWAS summit on Saturday devoted to the situation in Mali, Guinea and Burkina Faso.