Ukraine Grain Ship Leaves Odesa Port
Reuters reports that the sailing was made possible after Turkey and the United Nations brokered a grain and fertiliser export agreement between Russia and Ukraine last month - a rare diplomatic breakthrough in a conflict that has become a drawn-out war of attrition.
The Sierra Leone-flagged ship Razoni will head to the port of Tripoli, Lebanon, after transiting Turkey's Bosphorus Strait linking the Black Sea, which is dominated by Russia's navy, to the Mediterranean. It is carrying 26,527 tonnes of corn.
But there are still hurdles to overcome before millions of tonnes of Ukrainian grain depart from its Black Sea ports, including clearing sea mines and creating a framework for vessels to safely enter the conflict zone and pick up cargoes. read more
Russia's invasion of Ukraine on Feb. 24 has disrupted global food and energy supplies and the United Nations has warned of the risk of multiple famines this year.
Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskiy, in an evening video address, described the shipment as "the first positive signal that there is a chance to stop the development of a world food crisis."