Ukraine will re-launch grain exports no matter what Russia does, Budanov says

Kyrylo Budanov
Kyrylo Budanov
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Ukraine will export grain in spite of Russian attacks on Ukrainian port and agricultural infrastructure, Ukrainian military intelligence chief Kyrylo Budanov said in an interview with Bulgaria’s bTV news channel on Aug. 5.

"(Russian) attacks on portinfrastructure and grain terminals of Ukraine are more evidence of Russian crimes against humanity," Budanov said, when asked about Ukraine's plans following the termination of the grain deal by Russia.

It is mostly poor countries in Africa and Asia, which rely on supplies of cheap foodstuffs from Ukraine, that are affected by from fall in Ukrainian grain exports, Budanov said.

"Ukraine is taking measures in order to restore the volume of its agri-exports," the intelligence chief said, claiming that Ukraine will export grain and other food whether Russia likes it or not.

Russia's withdrawal from the grain initiative

Russia officially announced the termination of the grain deal on the pretext of repeated attacks on the illegally built Crimea Bridge.

Read also: Russian invaders ship out stolen Ukrainian grain via Mariupol and Crimea

However, Ukraine noted on April 27, almost three months before the latest attack on the Crimean Bridge on July 17, that Russia was effectively sabotaging the deal by refusing to carry out inspections of ships, as had been agreed under the initiative. This lead to a backlog of unloaded ships building up.

Russia said it was unhappy with the conditions of the deal, and demanded that its state agricultural bank be allowed to use the SWIFT interbank transfer system again. The UN proposed that U.S. bank or a specially created subsidiary bank be set up to allow payments on agricultural exports by Russia to be made, but the Kremlin refused to accept this compromise.

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy then offered to extend the grain deal with the UN and Turkey, but without Russian participation.

The grain green corridor mediated by the UN and Turkey had allowed Ukraine to export grain from three of its Black Sea ports starting from Aug. 1, 2022.

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Read the original article on The New Voice of Ukraine