Ukraine to create alternative route for grain exports via Romanian territorial waters - Reuters

The route will pass through the territorial waters of Romania
The route will pass through the territorial waters of Romania

Following Russia's withdrawal from the "grain deal" Ukraine is creating a temporary route for food exports through the Black Sea via Romania territorial waters, Reuters reported on July 19, citing an official letter from Ukraine to the UN's International Maritime Organization.

"Its goal is to facilitate the unblocking of international shipping in the north-western part of the Black Sea," Reuters said.

Read also: Ukraine proposes to continue Black Sea Grain Initiative without Russia – PM

The route, according to media reports, will pass through Romania's territorial waters and exclusive maritime economic zone.

On July 17, Russia officially announced its withdrawal from the grain agreement, motivated by explosions on the Crimean Bridge. At the same time, Moscow withdrew guarantees for the safety of navigation in the Black Sea.

Read also: Zelenskyy stands firm as Russia withdraws from “grain agreement”

On the same day, President Volodymyr Zelenskyy proposed to extend the grain deal without the Russians – together with Turkey and the UN.

The Black Sea Grain Initiative, signed under the mediation of the UN and Turkey last July, unblocked three Ukrainian ports for food exports. The grain corridor became operational on Aug. 1, 2022.

Read also: UN Secretary-General urges Putin to salvage Black Sea grain deal

The plans to seek an alternative route comes amid Russia's massive attack on Odesa Oblast with dozens of drones and missiles in the early hours of July 19. It was one of the most intense strikes in the region since the war began.

A grain and an oil terminal were damaged, as well as reservoirs and loading equipment.

A TV-guided Kh-59 cruise missile was shot down near the coastline, falling on a residential area.

At least six people, including a nine-year-boy, were injured in the attack.

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