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Russia’s Foreign Minister in doubt over grain deal extension: ‘Ukrainian grain is supplied to EU, not the poorest countries’

Sergey Lavrov, Russia’s Foreign Minister, says Russia has asked the United Nations for data on the destinations of grain shipments as it is “not certain about the end recipient,” TASS says.

“The recipients of Ukraine’s grain within the agreement signed on 22 July in Istanbul have turned out to be countries that are not ranked among the poorest ones; they receive only small proportions of the grain leaving the Black Sea ports. More than 50% of Ukraine’s grain is being transported to the EU countries, and the UN has stats on it,” Lavrov said.

Russia’s Foreign Minister claims that the European countries say that they receive most of the Ukrainian grain, “but then this grain is shipped worldwide, including the poorest countries.” In this regard, Russia has asked the UN for statistics on the movement of grain to the final destination.

Lavrov also said that before the deal extension is considered, “all issues should be resolved.”

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On 22 July, representatives of Ukraine, Russia, Turkey, and the UN signed an agreement regarding the exports of Ukraine’s grain via the Black Sea. A caravan of 13 ships, the largest since the introduction of the “grain corridor”, left the Ukrainian ports of Odesa, Chornomorsk and Yuzhne on 4 September. The caravan was transporting 282,500 tonnes of Ukrainian agricultural produce.

A total of 261 vessels left the unlocked Black Sea ports as of 3 October, according to Ukraine's Ministry of Infrastructure. Those ships have transported 5.9 million tonnes of agricultural produce for countries worldwide.

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