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Ukraine says grain coming to Somalia, however Russia skeptical


NAIROBI, Kenya — Ukraine’s president says tons of grain from his nation will arrive within the coming weeks in Somalia, the place famine approaches and the worldwide crises of meals safety and local weather change put hundreds of thousands in danger.

President Volodymyr Zelenskyy’s remark got here as Russian President Vladimir Putin accuses the West of sending a lot of the grain from Ukraine’s reopened ports to Europe as an alternative of poorer and hungrier components of the world.

Talking at an financial discussion board in Vladivostok on Wednesday, Putin accused the West of colonialism and urged that Russia might discuss with Turkey about revising the deal that lifted Russia’s blockade on Ukrainian ports and allowed ships secure passage.

“With the exclusion of Turkey as a mediator, virtually all of the grain exported from Ukraine was despatched to the (European Union) nations as an alternative of the poorest international locations,” Putin mentioned.

“It’s apparent that with an method like that, the magnitude of the meals downside on the planet will continue to grow, and that would result in an unprecedented humanitarian disaster,” he added. “Possibly it’s price interested by proscribing the exports of grain and different merchandise on that route? I’ll actually focus on the difficulty with the president of Turkey.”

Russia has raised the allegation earlier than, however that is the primary time Putin has echoed it.

The Russian president mentioned of 87 ships loaded with grain from Ukraine, simply two carried grain for the U.N. World Meals Program — 60,000 tons out of the entire of about 2 million tons.

Just one ship from Ukraine has arrived in sub-Saharan Africa, docking on the port of Djibouti final week with grain that WFP mentioned would go to drought-affected Somalia and Ethiopia. That first ship carried 23,000 metric tons of grain, which WFP referred to as sufficient to feed 1.5 million folks on full rations for a month.

Somalia particularly wants assist. The nation had sourced 90% of its wheat from Ukraine and Russia earlier than this 12 months. It now suffers from a scarcity of meals and humanitarian help as 1000’s of individuals die and the world largely focuses on Ukraine.

The Ukrainian president in a tweet Tuesday evening mentioned 28,600 tons of wheat will arrive in Somalia within the coming weeks and blamed the approaching famine in that nation on Russia’s actions this 12 months.

“Ukraine continues to avoid wasting the world with its grain,” Zelenskyy asserted.

African nations have been on the heart of Western efforts to reopen Ukraine’s ports as america and allies accused Russia of ravenous the world by denying exports from Ukraine, one of many world’s largest grain exporters. African leaders additionally visited Russia to satisfy with Putin over the difficulty.

However now, Russia is making an attempt to show the meals safety difficulty query in opposition to the West. “They cheated the general public and companions in Africa and different areas who acutely want meals,” Putin mentioned. “They have been claiming that they have been performing within the pursuits of growing international locations, however acted fully in their very own pursuits.”

The Joint Coordination Middle, run by the U.N., Turkey, Russia and Ukraine, in its newest replace Tuesday evening mentioned 96 outbound ships have been enabled to date carrying greater than 2.2 million metric tons.

Industrial ships have gone properly past Europe to Egypt, Iran, Israel, Libya, India, South Korea and China, carrying a variety of meals merchandise together with wheat, corn for animal feed, sunflower meal, soya beans, sunflower oil and sunflower seed.

Turkey is a well-liked vacation spot as a result of it’s a main miller of wheat.

Meals safety consultants have mentioned most of the shipments are deliveries on current contracts that had been struck earlier than Russia’s actions.

One of many 5 industrial vessels approved to depart Ukraine on Wednesday is certain for Kenya with 51,400 metric tons of wheat, the JCC mentioned, including that locations “might change primarily based on industrial exercise.” The locations for the 4 different ships are Spain and Turkey.

Isachenkov reported from Moscow. Aya Batrawy in Dubai, United Arab Emirates, contributed.



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