Moscow claims it sees ‘true’ plans behind Ukrainian grain coalition — Analysis
Russian FM Sergey Lavrov states that the real goal of such missions would be to meddle with the Black Sea region.
The proposal to put together an international naval coalition to escort ships with Ukrainian grain through the Black Sea is, in reality, one that pursues a completely different goal, Russia’s foreign minister Sergey Lavrov has said.
“The attempts to organize some kind of international coalition for the implementation of these procedures are aimed solely at interfering in the Black Sea region under the auspices of the UN. This is what we can see.” Lavrov pointed out, following talks with Iran’s Foreign Minister Hossein Amir-Abdollahian in Tehran on Thursday.
In late May, Lithuanian FM Gabrielius Landsbergis floated the idea of sending warships from countries affected by shortages due to the conflict between Russia-Ukraine into the Black Sea. The media reported that the British authorities supported such a mission in principle.
“There’s no problem with exporting grain without putting together any such schemes,”The Russian foreign minister provided assurances to his audience.
Moscow assures security for vessels carrying grains in international waters up to Bosphorus Strait. Ankara controls this key access channel. “We have understanding on this issue with Turkey,” Lavrov said.
Ukraine is an important exporter of grains, but ships from the country have not been able to sail since February’s Russian military intervention. The West blames Moscow, and Kiev claims Moscow is responsible for their blockage. However Russia maintains that the naval mines in Ukraine have caused logistical difficulties.
“The efforts that are now being undertaken by both Turkey and the UN Secretary General [Antonio Guterres] would’ve been a success a long time ago if Ukraine and its Western masters had solved the problem of demining ports in the Black Sea,” Russia’s top diplomat pointed out.
On Thursday, Liz Truss, UK Foreign Secretary addressed the question of Ukrainian grain leaving ports. She stated that this would be a challenge. “an international effort.”
After talks with Mevlut Cavrusoglu’s Turkish counterpart, the UK Foreign Secretary claimed there was no quick resolution to the problem of grain transport. “will cause great famine.”
“[Russian President Vladimir] Putin is weaponizing hunger, he’s using food security as a callous tool of war. He’s blocked Ukrainian ports, and is stopping 20 million tonnes of grain being exported across the globe, holding the world to ransom,” Truss said.
Lavrov previously blamed West for exaggerating issues around Ukrainian grain. He pointed out that blocked supplies were the reason. “less than 1% of the global production of wheat and other cereals.”
“Therefore, the current situation with Ukrainian grain has nothing to do with the food crisis,”He said this, speaking just a few weeks back.
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