Ships loaded with grain left Ukraine despite Russia suspending its participation in an UN-brokered deal that ensures the safe wartime passage of essential food supplies for countries battling with hunger. This happened on Tuesday.
The U.N. mentioned that three vessels loaded with 84,490 metric tons of wheat, corn, and sunflower meal departed via a humanitarian sea corridor prepared in July 2022. The corridor, brokered by Turkey and the U.N., was seen as a breakthrough that ensured that Africa, parts of Asia, and the Middle East would receive grains and other food from the Black Sea region when Russia waged war in Ukraine.
Russia cited an alleged Ukrainian drone attack against the Black Sea fleet in declaring the suspension of its part of the grain deal during the weekend. On Monday, the Defense Ministry of Russia reported that ship-specific traffic from ports based in southern Ukraine was paused, referring to the movement as “unacceptable.”
But 14 vessels successfully sailed on Monday, including one chartered by the U.N. World Food Program to transport wheat to Ethiopia and the neighbouring Kenya and Somalia, severely impacted by the worst drought in some decades.
Analysts recommend that Russia is bound by conditions of the grain deal it reportedly signed with the U.N. and Turkey, which include a commitment not to target civilian vessels travelling per the deal. Such an attack would violate international laws.
References: The Hindu
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