March 30, 2023

Dubai Week

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The Turkish president announced the extension of the agreement allowing the export of Ukrainian grain

Extended to Russia, Ukraine and Turkey Agreement to allow resumption of Ukrainian grain exports After the start of the Russian invasion of Ukraine, Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan announced on Saturday, without specifying an extension period.

“After negotiations with both sides, we have confirmed the extension of the contract that was due to expire on March 19,” Erdogan said in comments broadcast on Turkish television hours before the deal expired at midnight on Saturday-Sunday.

For his part, Ukrainian Infrastructure Minister Oleksandr Kubrakov welcomed the announcement, noting that the contract was extended for 120 days.

“I have extended the Black Sea Grain Initiative by 120 days. We thank (UN Secretary-General) Antonio Guterres, the United Nations, President Recep Tayyip Erdogan and (Turkish Defense) Minister Hulusi Agar and all our partners for their commitment to the agreement,” he tweeted. wrote

Until now, Russia has not confirmed the extension of the agreement.

For his part, Erdogan did not specify the duration of the extension. Ankara previously expressed its desire to stay for 120 days, while Russia wanted to extend it to only 60 days.

“This agreement is very important for global food supply. I thank Russia and Ukraine for not giving up any effort for a new extension, and I thank the Secretary-General of the United Nations,” he added.

The start of the Russian invasion of Ukraine in February 2022 caused warships to block Ukrainian ports in the Black Sea.

But in July 2022, an agreement brokered by Turkey and the United Nations, signed by Moscow and Kiev, allowed a safe route for exports of essential grain products. The contract was extended in November till March 18.

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France 24/AFP