Zelensky orders the army to act to preserve grain exports in the Black Sea

On the fourth day in a row Russian attacks on agricultural infrastructure And exporting grain In Odessa, Ukraine decided to raise the pulse by involving its military in a plan to try to prevent grain ships from leaving their ports on the Black Sea. Ukraine’s President, Volodymyr Zelensky, held a meeting at the highest level on Friday with the army and navy chiefs, as well as with the infrastructure minister. The goal was to coordinate initiatives to keep the initiative alive despite the threats launched from Russia, which not only Last Monday closed the door to extending the agreement that guarantees a safe exit passage for grainBut it threatened any ship approaching Ukrainian ports. The result is higher prices on the international market, as indeed happened in the first months of the invasion that began in February last year.

several Missiles were fired at dawn today, OdessaOne of them denounced a military spokesman, even when the emergency services were already on the scene. “Unfortunately, the grain stations of an agricultural company in the Odessa region were bombed. The enemy destroyed 100 tons of peas and 20 tons of barley,” the district governor Ola Keber said in the morning via the Telegram social network.

Meanwhile, Turkey’s President, Recep Tayyip Erdogan, is trying, as he has throughout the war, to steer between the waters. On this occasion, he requested that the conditions demanded by Moscow for a return to the grain agreement be heard and taken into account, which amounted to nothing more than the lifting of sanctions on the international trade of its products as a punishment for the invasion of Ukraine. Russia also has some expectations. “If it is resolved, Russia supports the operation of the grain corridor,” Erdogan was quoted by the Efe news agency as telling reporters on Friday who were accompanying him upon his return from a visit to the Persian Gulf states.

Remnants of one of the rockets fired at a farm in Odessa, on July 21. Igor Tkachenko (IV)

Ukraine’s goal is to have General Valery Zalogny as head of the army; Admiral Oleksey Nezbaba and Infrastructure Minister Oleksandr Kubrakov have developed a “package of measures” to keep the Black Sea corridor open, the president said through his Telegram social media channel. At the same time, he called on the Foreign Ministry to take “similar diplomatic measures.”

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The United Nations has again accused Russia of endangering the food security of countries with few resources. “The events of the past week are only the latest development in the senseless federal war against its neighbour, a war whose consequences are rippling around the world,” said Rosemary DiCarlo, the UN’s chief of political affairs.

Russia’s deputy foreign minister, Sergei Vershinin, said a new grain agreement is possible between Russia and Turkey — the agreement was signed by Kiev and Moscow separately with Erdogan and the mediating parties — if the Kremlin’s terms, which include easing sanctions on their materials and products, are accepted. Moscow considers its bombing of Odessa a response to the attacks carried out by Kiev in recent days on Russian sites in the Ukrainian Crimea, which Russia has occupied since 2014.

After confirming Moscow’s refusal on 17 July, Kiev was determined to find a way to maintain international trade in grain. Zelensky said Ukraine was aware of the “risks and threats” involved. Not only did Russia bomb Odessa these days, but it also opened the door for any ship sailing through the region to be considered a military target. In a parallel move, Kiev announced on Thursday that from now on, all ships destined for Russian or Ukrainian ports in the Black Sea waters located in the territories occupied by the invader “may be considered by Ukraine as carriers of military goods, with all associated risks,” according to the Defense Ministry statement. The text also alludes to the fact that navigation in the northeastern Black Sea and in the Kerch Strait between Crimea and Russia is “prohibited because it is dangerous”.

Odessa, the main Ukrainian city on the shores of the Black Sea, was attacked again at dawn on Friday by Russia and for the fourth day in a row. The goal reached this time was agricultural exploitation. The spokeswoman for the Southern Command of the Armed Forces, Natalya Gomenyuk, denounced, on Telegram, the firing of Kalibr missiles even when the emergency services were already operating at the scene.

“Ukrainian farmers, as we can imagine, are watching this night attack with great alarm as they harvest their war-grown crops,” Martin Griffiths, the UN Under-Secretary-General for Humanitarian Affairs and Emergency Relief Coordinator, told the Security Council meeting on Friday. “The food they are harvesting now that may no longer be able to reach the global markets that need it most,” he added.

There were no fatalities, although two people were injured and a granary and a building where the machinery was located were damaged. The authorities did not give details of the company that was attacked and the exact location in the area in which it is located. He posted some photos showing the damage, including one of the emergency services trucks.

The enemy continues to intimidate and is undoubtedly linked to the grain initiative. Last night, the enemy attacked an agricultural enterprise in the Odessa region, where they tried to destroy grain stocks. directly [golpearon] “The barns are where they are stored and a building where the agricultural machinery is stored,” said Gomenyuk. The military spokeswoman added that the Russians fired Kalibr missiles from a ship in the Black Sea. He explained that they did it at a very low altitude to prevent the Ukrainian army’s anti-aircraft systems from detecting it.

Meanwhile, the European Union on Thursday accused Russian leader Vladimir Putin of using starvation as a weapon in the conflict. The High Representative for Foreign Affairs and Defense Policy, Josep Borrell, has warned that his withdrawal from the Ukraine grain removal agreement will lead to dire consequences that will also get worse with the “barbaric attitude” implied by the ongoing attacks in Odessa. “This will create a huge Food crisis in the worldBurrell said.

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