Food crisis will increase, EU calls on Russia to withdraw its decision

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Food crisis will increase
Food crisis will increase

The European Union (EU) has called on Russia to withdraw its decision to withdraw from the UN-brokered grain export deal.

They said on Sunday (October 31) that the move had hampered efforts to reduce the global food crisis. Ukraine, however, said that Moscow had planned this step in advance.

Moscow suspended participation in the Black Sea Treaty on Saturday. This effectively reduced exports from Ukraine, one of the world’s largest grain exporters. Moscow said the move came in the wake of a major Ukrainian drone strike near the port of Sevastopol in Russian-annexed Crimea.

EU foreign policy chief Josep Borrell wrote on Twitter that Russia’s decision to suspend participation in the Black Sea Treaty puts at risk key export routes for grain and fertilizer, much-needed to combat the global food crisis caused by the war on Ukraine. The EU is calling on Russia to reverse the decision.

US President Joe Biden on Saturday called the move “clearly outrageous”, saying it would exacerbate the food crisis. In addition, US Secretary of State Anthony Blinken accused Moscow of using food as a weapon.

Russia’s ambassador to Washington on Sunday said the US response to the move was “outrageous” and a lie.

Ukraine attacked the Russian fleet in the Black Sea near Sevastopol with 16 drones early Saturday morning, the Russian Defense Ministry said. British Navy ‘experts’ helped coordinate the terror attack.

Russia said it repelled the attack. However, the targeted ships were engaged in securing grain corridors from Ukraine’s Black Sea ports.

Ukraine’s Foreign Minister Dmytro Kuleba said Moscow used the explosions 220 kilometers from the grain corridor as a “false pretext” for a well-planned move.

Without any evidence, Kuleba said on Twitter that Russia planned this in advance. Russia decided long ago to resume its ‘hunger game’ and is now trying to justify it.

On Saturday, President Volodymyr Zelensky’s chief of staff accused Russia of staging a fictitious attack on its own installations.

Kiev often accuses Russia of using its Black Sea fleet to fire cruise missiles at civilian targets in Ukraine.

On the other hand, Moscow has also accused British naval personnel of destroying the Nord Stream gas pipelines last month. But London says these are false claims and orchestrated to cover up Russia’s military failures in Ukraine.

Russia’s withdrawal from the grain deal marks a new breakthrough in the eight-month war since the Russian offensive began in February. That is the recent Ukrainian counterattack and Russian drone and missile strikes that have destroyed more than 30 percent of Ukraine’s manufacturing capacity and hit populated areas.

Both sides have accused each other of preparing to detonate radioactive bombs.

Zelensky called for a strong response from the United Nations and the Group of Twenty (G20) major economies. He called Russia’s decision to withdraw from the grain agreement a meaningless move.

In a video message on Saturday, Zelensky said Russia should be expelled from the G20.

Shipments from Ukraine resumed due to the grain deal. The country was allowed to sell grain in the world market. The target was set to export 5 million metric tons from Ukraine per month.

More than 9 million tonnes of maize, wheat, sunflower products, barley, mustard and soya have been exported under the July 22 agreement.

But before the deal expires on November 19, Russia has repeatedly said it has serious problems. Ukraine has complained that Moscow has prevented about 200 ships from lifting cargo full of grain.

When the agreement was signed, the UN’s World Food Program reported that some 47 million people were suffering from ‘extreme hunger’. Because the war shut down Ukraine’s exports, it caused global food shortages and increased prices.

In a letter to UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres on Saturday, Russia said it was suspending the deal “indefinitely”. Because the treaty cannot “guarantee the safety of civilian ships”.

Moscow called for a UN Security Council meeting on Monday to discuss the Sevastopol attack. Dmitry Polyansky, the country’s deputy ambassador to the United Nations, made this call on Twitter.

More than 10 ships were waiting to enter the humanitarian corridor that day, UN coordinator Amir Abdullah said on Saturday. But there was no agreement regarding the movement of ships on Sunday.

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