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Comment of the Ambassador of Ukraine to the Republic of Cyprus H.E. Mr. Ruslan Nimchynskyi regarding the Russian grain terrorism and blackmail
21 July 2023 16:02

Last year, the world united to ensure Ukrainian grain exports, which had been blocked by Russian naval blockade of Ukrainian seaports.

With the help of UN and Türkiye we managed to launch the Black Sea Grain Initiative, which has proven to be a vital lifeline for the world.

Owing to the Black Sea Grain Initiative, more than half of the global supply by the United Nations World Food Programme has been covered by Ukrainian grain.

Its results are spectacular: almost 33 million metric tons of agricultural products were exported to 45 countries.

Despite what Russian propaganda says, around two-thirds of the overall volume of Ukrainian exports went to developing countries and to those most vulnerable to acute food insecurity in countries in Asia, Africa, and Latin America.

We emphasize that since 2022, no sanctions have been imposed on Russian food exports and when Russia claims otherwise, it simply lies.

Proving its genuine commitment to guaranteeing food security, Ukraine has also launched an important humanitarian program, “Grain from Ukraine,” initiated by President Zelenskyy. Within its framework, Ukraine provided grain free of charge to those in need, especially in countries of Africa.

We engaged 34 donor countries, who helped fund the program and save people from the threat of hunger. We are grateful to every donor who has joined the “Grain from Ukraine” program.

On April 29th, 2023, Russia fully blocked the functioning of Ukraine’s Pivdenny seaport. The last grain vessel departed the port of Odesa on July 16, 2023. As of now, Russia has fully blocked the functioning of the Black Sea Grain Initiative.

Right after killing the Grain Deal, Russia demonstrated its true attitude toward global food security by attacking key Ukrainian seaports, Odesa and Chornomorsk, with numerous missiles and drones. Russia deliberately strikes Ukrainian cities, which are vital for global food security, in order to achieve its political goals.

No country in the world has the right to destroy global food security. The result will be hurting those most vulnerable, primarily in African and Asian countries. Russia must stop playing hunger games.

Over 400 million people around the world rely on vital Ukrainian grain supplies to ensure their food security, mainly in countries in Asia and Africa.

By refusing to extend its participation in the Black Sea Grain Initiative, Russia puts millions of people around the world at risk of hunger and provokes rising food prices.

This is part of a deliberate Russian strategy to destabilize countries in Asia and Africa. Russian terrorists want the acute food crisis to trigger social unrest, migration, and political crises. Ukraine has never put forward any additional demands to continue the functioning of the deal. We always stressed that we want our grain exports to continue unabated and expand capacity.

Ukraine has always been and remains a vital food security guarantor for many countries across the globe. Unlike Russia, we remain committed to our obligations.

We call on all UN member states to support this effort and ensure the protection of life—not only in Ukraine but around the globe. From Morocco to China, from Indonesia to Lebanon.

Food security is one of the important points of President Zelenskyy’s Peace Formula, aimed at restoring just and lasting peace in Ukraine in line with the UN Charter and UNGA resolutions. We call on all states and organizations to join the implementation of this specific item of the Formula.

We urge the international community to join Ukraine’s efforts to save vital grain exports to the world and take a principled stance. Together, we must protect those most vulnerable around the world whom Russia tries to hurt.

All people around the world have a right to stability. Africa has the right to stability. Asia has the right to stability. Europe has the right to stability. Today is the time to protect our collective right to stability from the terrorist regime in the Kremlin.

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