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First ship carrying Ukrainian grain leaves Odessa port | Government. & Politics

Susie Blanc and Susan Fraser – Associated Press

Kyiv, UKRAINE (AP) — The first ship carrying Ukrainian grain left Odessa port on Monday. This is due to United Nations-Turkish intervention, which is expected to release the country’s large stockpile of grain to foreign markets, facilitating food growth. crisis.

The Sierra Leone-flagged cargo ship Razoni has left Odesa carrying more than 26,000 tons of maize destined for Lebanon.

“The first grain ship has left port since the Russian invasion,” Ukrainian Infrastructure Minister Oleksandr Kublakov said on Twitter, posting a video of a long ship slowly heading out to sea honking its horn.

In a separate post on Facebook, Kublakov wrote that Ukraine is the world’s fourth largest corn exporter and that “the possibility of exporting corn via ports will be a huge success in ensuring global food security.” There are,” he said.

“Today, together with our partners, Ukraine has taken another step towards preventing world hunger,” he added.

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In Moscow, Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov hailed the ship’s departure as “very positive” and said it would help test “the efficiency of the mechanisms agreed at the talks in Istanbul”. .

Turkish Defense Minister Hulusi Akar said the Lazoni will dock in Istanbul, the gateway to the Bosphorus, on Tuesday afternoon and a joint team of Russian, Ukrainian, Turkish and UN officials will be on board for inspection. I said yes.

In an interview with Turkey’s state-run Anadolu Agency, Akar warned that the global food crisis threatened to trigger “a serious wave of migration from Africa to Europe to Turkey.”

The corn is heading for Lebanon, a Middle Eastern country that the World Bank has listed as one of the world’s worst financial crises in more than 150 years. His 2020 explosion at Beirut’s main port shattered the capital and destroyed grain silos.

Lebanon imports mainly wheat from Ukraine, but also buys corn to make cooking oil and produce animal feed.

Turkish Ministry of Defense Other ships also leave Ukrainian ports It went through secure passage along a deal signed in Istanbul on July 22, but no further details were provided.

Russia and Ukraine have signed separate agreements with Turkey and the United Nations, paving the way for Ukraine. major breadbasket of the world — exporting 22 million tons of grain and other agricultural products stranded in Black Sea ports due to Russian aggression.

The deal also allows Russia to export grain and fertilizer.

Turkey’s Defense Minister praised the Joint Coordination Center, staffed by Russian, Ukrainian, Turkish and UN officials, as a forum for opposing sides to engage with each other.

“The problem they have is clear. There is war. But it’s the only place the two sides can be together,” Akar said. “There are ups and downs, but there is a good environment for dialogue.”

Ukraine’s infrastructure ministry said 16 more ships were blocked and waiting at the port of Odessa since Russia’s major invasion of Ukraine began on February 24.

Kublakov said the transport would also help the economy of war-torn Ukraine.

“Unlocking the port will bring at least $1 billion in foreign currency earnings to the economy and give the agricultural sector a chance to plan for the coming year,” Kubrakov said.

The United Nations welcomed the progress and Secretary-General António Guterres said he hoped the shipment would “bring much-needed stability and relief to global food security, especially in the most fragile humanitarian situations”. Stated.

After more than five months of war, the honking of a departing freighter delighted city resident Olena Vitalievna.

“Life is finally starting to move forward and we are seeing positive changes,” she said. We live here and want everything to work for us and everything to be buzzing. ”

However, it was only as fighting escalated elsewhere in Ukraine that grain shipments resumed.

The Ukrainian president’s office said at least three civilians were killed and 16 wounded in Russian shelling in the Donetsk region over the past 24 hours.

Donetsk Governor Pablo Kirilenko has called on all residents to evacuate, stressing the need to evacuate the approximately 52,000 children still remaining in the area.

In Kharkiv, two people were wounded in a Russian attack in the morning. One was injured while waiting for a bus, the other when a Russian artillery shell exploded near his apartment.

Governor Vitaly Kim said the southern city of Mykolaiv also faced repeated shelling, which destroyed a hospital unit building and damaged an ambulance. He said three civilians were wounded in Russian artillery shelling elsewhere in the city.

Shortly after the grain shipment contract was signed on July 22, a Russian missile targeted Odessa. Analysts warned that continued fighting could threaten the grain trade.

“The danger remains. The Odessa region faces constant shelling and only regular supplies can prove the viability of the signed agreements,” said Kyiv-based think tank Razumkov Center. said Volodymyr Sidenko, an expert in

“The departure of the first ships will not solve the food crisis. It could only be the last step if Russia decides to continue its offensive in the south.”

Fraser reported from Ankara, Turkey. Contributed by John Gambrel of Dubai.

Copyright 2022 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed without permission.

First ship carrying Ukrainian grain leaves Odessa port | Government. & Politics

Source link First ship carrying Ukrainian grain leaves Odessa port | Government. & Politics

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