Russia says it would let ships carrying food exports leave Ukraine if some sanctions were lifted
Added 05-26-22 01:14:02am EST - “Ukrainian ports in the Black Sea have been blocked since Russia's invasion, causing more than 20 million tons of grains to be? stuck in Ukraine.” - Businessinsider.com
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A senior Russian government official said the Kremlin would allow ships carrying food to leave Ukrainian ports in exchange for the lifting of sanctions.
Ukrainian ports in the Black Sea have been blocked since Russia's invasion on February 24, leaving more than 20 million metric tons of grains stuck in Ukraine, per Reuters. This disruption is exacerbating a world food crunch as Ukraine accounts for 12% of global wheat exports and 17% of global corn exports, per ING Economics. It's also the world's largest sunflower oil exporter.
"We have repeatedly commented on the matter and said that a resolution of the food problem would require a comprehensive approach, including the lifting of sanctions imposed on Russian exports and financial transactions," Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Andrei Rudenko said on Wednesday, as reported by Interfax news agency.
Separately, Vassily Nebenzia, the Russian ambassador to the United Nations, said there is a "safe corridor" allowing access to the key Odesa port, according to a Reuters report.
However, Ukraine needs to demine the waters before the safe corridors can be used, Nebenzia said, per Reuters. "They mined the ports, not us," he said. "There is a corridor which exists, which they don't use."
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