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Operation Cereals: Moscow's commitment to Ankara to open Ukrainian ports

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The Kremlin claimed on Wednesday that grain exports would resume in the coming days from the Russian-occupied Ukrainian port of Berdyansk, when they were now complete All of this is happening, according to the British Guardian, at the time when Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov , contacts in Ankara with Turkish counterpart Mevlüt Çavuşoγlu .

However, Mr Çavuşoλουlu made a cautious statement, saying more talks would be needed between Moscow and Kyiv to ensure the safety of any ships carrying export goods and cereals.

Ukraine has stopped since Russia launched a full-scale invasion in late February and blocked the country's Black Sea ports, through which it used to flow 90% of trade of the fifth largest exporter The sudden cessation of exports has raised concerns that the war in Ukraine will trigger a global food crisis and push millions into starvation.

The UN then appealed to Russia and Ukraine, as well as to Turkey, a NATO member & # 8211; responsible for maritime traffic entering and leaving Black Sea across the Bosphorus & # 8211; agree on a corridor.

According to the UN, Russia and Ukraine supply about 40% of the wheat consumed in Africa, where prices have already risen by about 23% strong>.

Any Turkish-mediated grain corridor will likely include cargo ships leaving Ukrainian-held Odessa and other Black Sea ports with Turkish naval escorts before traveling to Turkey and then to world markets. Lavrov blames Western sanctions for food crisis, said Ukraine should allow merchant ships to leave its ports safely in order to reach any agreement on a grain corridor.

Turkey , which has good relations with Kyiv and Moscow, tried at the beginning of the war to act as a mediator between the two sides, but the ceasefire talks have since weakened.

Ankara has said it is ready to play a role as part of a “monitoring mechanism” if any agreement on cereal exports is reached.

An agreement between Russia and Ukraine is a vital starting point for the resumption of cereal exports, but should be Many other things.

Shipping industry experts say Ukraine's coastal waters should be demined, special insurance arranged and strict assurances given to ship safety and the crew, before shipowners want to send a fleet to the Black Sea.

Source: politis.com.cy

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