KATERYNA TYSHCHENKO – SATURDAY, 29 OCTOBER 2022, 21:52
President Volodymyr Zelenskyy calls for a harsh international response – in particular from the UN and the G20 – to Russia’s withdrawal from the Black Sea Grain Initiative [an agreement brokered by the UN with Russia and Türkiye launched on 22 July to enable ships to transport grain from Ukraine - ed.].
Source: President Zelenskyy’s video address
Quote from Zelenskyy: "A strong international response is needed now. Both at the UN level and at other levels. In particular, at the level of the G20.
How can Russia be among the G20 if it is deliberately working to create famine on several continents? This is nonsense. Russia has no place in the G20."
Details: Zelenskyy said that Russia is doing everything it can to create artificial famine or a severe price crisis for millions of people in Africa, the Middle East and South Asia.
"But why is a handful of people somewhere in the Kremlin deciding whether people in Egypt or Bangladesh will have food on their tables? What is this about? The world has the power to protect people against this," he stated.
Zelenskyy said that Russia’s announcement that it was suspending the Grain Initiative was "rather predictable".
"In fact, this decision was not made today. Russia began deliberately aggravating the food crisis back in September, when it blocked the movement of ships carrying our food exports. Between September and now, 176 vessels have accumulated in the grain corridor; these ships have been prevented from completing their journey. Some grain carriers have been waiting to pass for more than three weeks. This is an absolutely deliberate blockade by Russia," he stressed.
The president further emphasised that "Russia appears to have made this decision in September. The queue of ships carrying foodstuffs we are witnessing now bears this out. It is also important to note that Russia attacked our Naval Forces at least twice during the time that the Grain Initiative was active – the same forces that guarantee the safety of the grain corridor."
Previously: Russia said that it is suspending its participation in implementing the Grain Initiative, allegedly because of the "terrorist attack" in Sevastopol Bay on the morning of Saturday, 29 October.
Dmytro Kuleba, the Minister of Foreign Affairs of Ukraine, said that Russia made up a contrived reason in order to exit the Grain Initiative and urged the world to put pressure on Russia to stop "playing hunger games" and resume carrying out its duties and responsibilities.