Ukraine and Russia Agree Deal for Grain Shipments To Resume

After being blockaded by Vladimir Putin’s military, grain exports from Black Sea ports can now restart, following a historic agreement between Russia and Ukraine amid a long-standing conflict.

Representatives from Moscow and Kyiv refused to sit at the same table during the ceremony in Istanbul. Also, the two nations’ flags were changed so that they were not placed close to one another.

However, UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres called on both governments to fully implement the agreement to open the way to “significant volumes of commercial food exports” from Ukraine’s three main ports: Odesa, Chornomorsk, and Yuzhne.

The deal, which was also signed at the event in Istanbul by the UN and Turkey, gives hope for a change and resolution to a global food crisis that has been worsened by the Russian invasion.

According to Mr. Guterres, it benefits developing countries now facing bankruptcy and the “most vulnerable people on the edge of famine.”

The landmark agreement, valid for 120 days, aims to inject more wheat, fertilizer, sunflower oil, and other products into world markets to help avert famine. The UN is expected to renew the deal unless the Ukraine-Russia war ends within that period.

It also ensures a safe passage in and out of three key Ukrainian airports under a “de facto ceasefire.” The JCC would be in charge of monitoring ship movements and carrying out inspections in the Black Sea, having the power to decide if a vessel detracts from any of the agreed channels.

Also, all returning ships will be examined at a Turkish por. The move responds to Russian fears about ships bringing foreign weaponry to Ukraine.

Moreover, the United Nations spent more than two months talking with the industry to make sure the proposal was financially sustainable in order to alleviate ship insurers’ concerns, Mr. Guterres stated during the ceremony.

The announcement has been well received by the international community. Turkey’s President Recep Tayyip Erdogan said the deal would ease inflation and rising prices after the war hit “the whole of humanity.”