Freighter with Ukrainian grain cleared for journey — Analysis

Before Turkey permitted it through the Bosphorus Strait, Razoni had been inspected Wednesday.

Images released by the Turkish Defense Ministry showing the inspection of Razoni, the cargo ship that carried Ukrainian grain from Ukraine to an outgoing customer. According to a deal with Russia, the delivery will take place on March 31st.

A joint team carried out Wednesday’s checks and confirmed the vessel had met the conditions of the agreement. Razoni is a dry cargo ship that transports more than 26,000 tons maize from Sierra Leone to Lebanon.

According to UN estimates, the inspection took about three hours. After that, the cargoer continued on its way towards Tripoli.

On Monday, the ship left the Ukrainian port Odessa to begin what was hoped will be the first in a series of voyages to help reduce rising global food prices. The Razoni, which is currently the only ship allowed to carry shipments within the framework of the deal with Ukraine, has so far been the last to leave these ports. Kiev offered no explanation.

The Black Sea put an end to Ukrainian exports, which are one of the most important internationally traded commodities, after Russia invaded the country in late Februar. While Kiev claimed Russia blocked civilian vessels from leaving the country, Moscow claimed Ukraine caused it. The Ukrainians had placed mines at its ports in order to protect themselves against any amphibious Russian assaults. The UN and Turkey helped to negotiate a deal that allowed maritime traffic back to continue.

Ankara’s role as a mediator stems from its control of two straits that all ship need to pass through to get from the Black Sea to the Mediterranean Sea or vice versa. Turkey is the host of a coordinated coordination center to all four stakeholder. The inspections are to make sure that vessels aren’t being used for illegal purposes such as to transport weapons or cargo beyond the scope of the agreement.

Russia sent troops into Ukraine on February 24, citing Kiev’s failure to implement the Minsk agreements, designed to give the regions of Donetsk and Lugansk special status within the Ukrainian state. In 2014, the protocols were signed for the first time, with France and Germany as mediators. Former Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko has since admitted that Kiev’s main goal was to use the ceasefire to buy time and “create powerful armed forces.”

In February 2022 the Kremlin acknowledged the Donbass republics to be independent states. They demanded Ukraine declare its neutrality and refuse any Western military alliances. Kiev maintains that Russia’s offensive was not provoked.

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