New indignation in Russia was caused by the suspension of an international agreement on the export of grain from Ukraine through the Black Sea. On Sunday, Western governments appealed to President Vladimir Putin to honor commitments made in the summer deal. Ukraine and the US have accused Moscow of using hunger as a weapon. The UN still sees hope for saving the agreement. The UN representative in New York said that UN Secretary-General António Guterres is in intensive contact with the aim of lifting the suspension of the July agreement. The agreement aims to give millions of people around the world access to bread and other food.

Despite the Russian suspension, ships will continue to move along the Black Sea corridor on Monday – the plan of the UN delegation, Turkey and Ukraine was agreed on this. This was announced late in the evening by the coordination center in Istanbul. On Monday, twelve ships should go along the corridor towards Istanbul, four – in the opposite direction. The Russian delegation was informed about this.

On Saturday, Russia suspended export approvals “indefinitely.” Moscow justified this by Ukrainian drone attacks on its Black Sea Fleet on the Crimean peninsula, which Moscow has annexed in violation of international law since 2014. According to the information, as a result of shelling in Sevastopol on Saturday morning, the minesweeper “Ivan Golubets” and some port facilities were damaged. However, video footage purporting to show the attack suggests that more ships may have been hit.

Russia has officially informed UN Secretary-General Guterres of the suspension of the agreement. Due to drone strikes on Russian ships from the Black Sea Guarded Corridor, Russia “cannot guarantee the safety of civilian ships traveling under the aforementioned initiative,” wrote UN Ambassador Vasily Nebensia. Kyiv considers this a pretext.

According to Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Andrey Rudenko, Russia expects negotiations with the UN and Turkey on a grain agreement in the coming days. But before Russia could return to an agreement, a drone attack on the Black Sea Fleet had to be dealt with.

million tons of grain for the world market

The deal, brokered by Turkey and the UN in July, ended a months-long blockade of Ukrainian grain exports as a result of Russia’s war of aggression. As of October 24, the coordination center in Istanbul has registered the passage of 383 ships carrying more than 8.6 million tons of grain and other foodstuffs. This is important not only for nutrition in many other countries, but also for the household in Ukraine. Ultimately, Ukrainian farmers must be able to sow new seeds from billions of dollars in income.

The agreement was originally supposed to expire on November 19, but it would have been automatically renewed if neither party had objected. Moscow has repeatedly criticized the deal recently because it sees its own grain and fertilizer exports slowed down by sanctions imposed by the West.

Burbock: Famine in Niger or Lebanon should not depend on Putin

The EU urged Moscow to reverse this decision. The Minister of Foreign Affairs also requested this Annalena Burbock. “Millions of people around the world are starving, and Russia is once again making available the security of grain ships. This must stop,” said the green politician. “Whether families in Lebanon, Niger or Bangladesh will be able to pay for their next meal should not depend on the military plans of the Russian president.”

Moscow, by its actions, exacerbates hunger in the world, said President of Ukraine Volodymyr Zelensky. Since September, Russia has been postponing joint inspections of ships before they pass through the Bosphorus. 176 ships with about two million tons of grain got stuck there. On Sunday, for the first time since traffic resumed in August, not a single ship sailed.

Kyiv on Moscow’s proposal to negotiate: The first withdrawal of all troops

After Moscow’s repeated proposals for negotiations, Kyiv called the complete withdrawal of Russian troops a necessary condition. “The only realistic proposal should be an immediate end to Russia’s war against Ukraine and the withdrawal of Russian troops from Ukrainian territory,” Foreign Ministry spokesman Oleg Nikolenko said in Kyiv. He responded to recent statements by Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov, who received an offer from Insert confirmed for negotiation.

Despite the ongoing fighting for more than eight months, both sides again exchanged 50 prisoners of war. Zelensky said that more than 1,000 Ukrainian prisoners of war have been returned home since the beginning of the war.

US President Joe Biden has warned that Russia’s actions will only increase world hunger. Foreign Minister Anthony Blinken said: “Russia is once again using food as a weapon.” Federal Minister of Agriculture Cem Özdemir (The Greens) said it was unfortunate that Russia would be expected to abuse the agreement as a “means of pressure”.

Meanwhile, Slovenia transferred 28 Soviet M-55S main battle tanks to Ukraine. This is reported by the news portal “24ur.com” with reference to the Ministry of Defense. EU and NATO partner country Slovenia will now receive 43 heavy military trucks from Germany in a so-called ring exchange. Under such agreements, allies from Central and Eastern Europe supply Soviet-made weapons to Ukraine in exchange for modern military equipment. In July, Slovenia has already delivered 35 armored personnel carriers to Ukraine.

Germany donated 16 power generators as civilian aid, according to the German Embassy in Kyiv. Ukraine’s power grid has been hit hard by ongoing Russian airstrikes. There are repeated power outages across the country to conserve energy and stabilize the grid. According to Zelensky, four million Ukrainians are currently living under restrictions. (best/dpa)