Black Sea grain deal: three new ships allowed to go to Ukraine

by Nigel Hunt and Michelle Nicholls

LONDON/United Nations (Reuters) – The United Nations said three new ships have been approved to take part in the Black Sea grain initiative, after Moscow agreed to extend the deal for two months.

Russia threatened to pull out of an agreement between Moscow and Kiev in July if the West did not meet their demands regarding barriers to Russian grain and fertilizer exports.

The Kremlin announced on Thursday that it had extended the deal after “some expectation” of progress in the talks, but said progress was still needed.

The United Nations and Turkey helped set up the Black Sea Grain Initiative to avert a global food crisis because Ukraine is one of the world’s largest grain exporters.

The Joint Coordination Center responsible for the implementation of the agreement on Thursday authorized three new ships to sail to the Ukrainian ports of Odessa and Chernomosk, UN deputy spokesman Farhan Haq announced.

“While we welcome this partial resumption of activities, we call on all parties to ensure that authorization of new vessels is in place for all three ports in order to utilize capacity and meet industry demands”, Did he announce

Three Ukrainian ports are covered by the Istanbul Agreement, Odessa, Chornomorsk and Pivdeny.

(Reporting by Nigel Hunt and Michel Nicholls; French edition by Camille Renaud)

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