Ukraine wants agreement to transport safe passage beyond grain According to Reuters
© Reuters. Turkish bulk carrier OSPREY S, a Liberian-flagged cargo ship, is seen moored off the coast of Tuzla in Istanbul, Turkey August 4, 2022. REUTERS / Umit Bektas
By Yesim Dikmen and Pavel Polityuk
ISTANBUL/KYIV (Reuters) – Three grain tankers left Ukrainian ports on Friday under a safe passage agreement while the first cargo ship since the Russian invasion will arrive in Ukraine later in the day to and Kyiv called for the agreement to be extended to other countries for commodities such as metals.
The July 22 agreement is a rare diplomatic breakthrough as war breaks out in eastern Ukraine, with Kyiv trying to rebuild an economy that has crumbled after more than five months of conflict.
“We hope that the security guarantees of our partners from the UN and Turkey will continue to operate and that food exports from our ports will become stable and predictable. available to all market participants,” Ukrainian Infrastructure Minister Oleksandr Kubrakov said on Facebook (NASDAQ:) after the ships departed.
The first grain ship left Odesa on Monday.
Ukraine’s Deputy Economy Minister Taras Kachka told the Financial Times: “This agreement is about logistics, about the movement of ships through the Black Sea. “What is the difference between grain and iron ore?”
The United Nations and Turkey have brokered a safe passage agreement between Moscow and Kyiv after the United Nations warned of a famine outbreak caused by halted grain shipments from Ukraine.
Russian President Vladimir Putin sent troops into Ukraine on February 24, sparking the biggest conflict in Europe since World War Two and fueling a global food and energy crisis. Ukraine and Russia traditionally produce about a third of the world’s wheat, and Russia is Europe’s main energy supplier.
On Friday, two grain ships departed from Chornomorsk and one from Odesa, with a total of about 58,000 tons of corn.
The Turkish Ministry of Defense said on Twitter (NYSE:) that the Panama-flagged Navistar (NYSE:) ship, carrying 33,000 tons of corn to Ireland, left Odesa. The Maltese-flagged Rojen, carrying 13,000 tons of corn, left Chornomorsk for Britain.
In addition, the Turkish-flagged ship Polarnet, carrying 12,000 tons of corn, left Chornomorsk for the Turkish Black Sea port of Karasu.
Odesa’s regional government said the Turkish aircraft carrier Osprey S, flying the Liberian flag, is expected to arrive in Chornomorsk on Friday to load grain.
Some Western leaders have accused Russia of using deadlocked gas supplies to highly dependent Europe as an excuse to cut supplies as winter approaches in retaliation for Western sanctions. .
The dispute over the return of a turbine that Russia says is holding back gas supplies shows no sign of being resolved.
After five months of fighting, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskiy this week described the pressure his armed forces are under in the eastern Donbas region as “hell”.
Moscow is seeking control of the largely Russian-speaking Donbas, including the provinces of Luhansk and Donetsk, where pro-Moscow separatists seized territory after the Kremlin annexed Crimea in the south in 2014.
Zelenskiy spoke of fierce fighting around the town of Avdiivka and the fortified village of Pisky, where Ukraine has admitted “partial success” to the Russian enemy in recent days.
The Ukrainian military on Thursday said Russian forces had launched at least two attacks on Pisky but were repelled.
Ukraine has spent the past eight years fortifying defensive positions in Pisky, seeing it as a buffer against Russian-backed forces holding the city of Donetsk about 10 kilometers to the southeast.
Ukrainian General Oleksiy Hromov said his forces had recaptured two villages around the eastern city of Sloviansk but were pushed back to the town of Avdiivka after being forced to give up a coal mine considered a key defensive position. .
The Russian Defense Ministry confirmed their attack.
Reuters could not immediately verify either party’s claim.
The war displaced millions, killed thousands of civilians, and left cities, towns and villages in ruins. Ukraine and its Western allies have accused Russian forces of targeting civilians and war crimes, charges Russia denies.
Putin said he had launched what he called a “special military operation” in Ukraine to ensure Russian security and protect Russian-speaking people in Ukraine. Kyiv accuses Moscow of waging an imperialist war of aggression to retake a neighboring country that had shed Russian domination when the Soviet Union broke up in 1991.
NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg on Thursday said the war was the deadliest moment for Europe since World War Two and that Russia should not be allowed to win.