AP

1st ship carrying Ukrainian grain leaves the port of Odesa

Aug 1, 2022, 9:00 AM | Updated: Aug 2, 2022, 10:06 am
In this photo provided by the Ukrainian Infrastructure Ministry Press Office, the Razoni cargo ship...
In this photo provided by the Ukrainian Infrastructure Ministry Press Office, the Razoni cargo ship, under the flag of Sierra Leone, with 26,000 tons of the Ukrainian corn aboard, leaves the port in Odesa region, Ukraine, Monday, Aug. 1, 2022. The first ship carrying Ukrainian grain set off from the port of Odesa on Monday under an internationally brokered deal and is expected to reach Istanbul on Tuesday, where it will be inspected, before being allowed to proceed. (Ukrainian Infrastucture Ministry Press Office via AP)
(Ukrainian Infrastucture Ministry Press Office via AP)

KYIV, Ukraine (AP) — The first ship carrying Ukrainian grain set out Monday from the port of Odesa under an internationally brokered deal to unblock the embattled country’s agricultural exports and ease the growing global food crisis.

The Sierra Leone-flagged cargo ship Razoni sounded its horn as it slowly departed with over 26,000 tons of corn destined for Lebanon.

“The first grain ship since Russian aggression has left port,” Ukrainian Minister of Infrastructure Oleksandr Kubrakov declared on Twitter.

Russia and Ukraine signed agreements in Istanbul with Turkey and the U.N. on July 22, clearing the way for Ukraine to export 22 million tons of grain and other agricultural products that have been stuck in Black Sea ports because of Russia’s invasion of Ukraine more than five months ago. The deals also allow Russia to export grain and fertilizer.

As part of the agreements, safe corridors through the mined waters outside Ukraine’s ports were established.

Ukraine and Russia are major global suppliers of wheat, barley, corn and sunflower oil, with the fertile Black Sea region long known as the breadbasket of Europe. The holdup of food shipments because of the war has worsened rising food prices worldwide and threatened hunger and political instability in developing nations.

“Today Ukraine, together with partners, takes another step to prevent world hunger,” Kubrakov said.

In Moscow, Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov hailed the ship’s departure as “very positive,” saying it would help test the “efficiency of the mechanisms that were agreed during the talks in Istanbul.”

Under the agreements, ships going in and out of Ukrainian ports will be subject to inspection to make sure that incoming vessels are not carrying weapons and that outgoing ones are bearing only grain, fertilizer or related food items, not any other commodities.

The Razoni was expected to dock Tuesday afternoon in Istanbul at the entrance of the Bosporus, where joint teams of Russian, Ukrainian, Turkish and U.N. officials were set to board it for inspections.

More ships are expected to leave from Ukraine’s ports through the safe corridors. At Odesa, 16 more vessels, all blocked since the beginning of Russia’s invasion of Ukraine on Feb. 24, were waiting their turn, with others to follow, Ukrainian authorities said.

But some shipping companies are not yet rushing to export food across the Black Sea as they assess the danger of mines in the waters and the risk of Russian rockets hitting grain warehouses and ports.

U.N. Secretary-General Antonio Guterres said he hopes the shipments will “bring much-needed stability and relief to global food security especially in the most fragile humanitarian contexts.”

In an interview with Turkey’s state-run Anadolu Agency, Turkish Defense Minister Hulusi Akar warned that the global food crisis threatens to trigger “a serious wave of migration from Africa to Europe and to Turkey.”

Lebanon, the corn’s destination, is in the grip of a severe financial crisis. A 2020 explosion at its main port in Beirut shattered its capital city and destroyed grain silos. Lebanon mostly imports wheat from Ukraine but also buys its corn to make cooking oil and produce animal feed.

Kubrakov said the shipments will also help Ukraine’s war-shattered economy.

“Unlocking ports will provide at least $1 billion in foreign exchange revenue to the economy and an opportunity for the agricultural sector to plan for next year,” he said.

Hearing the ship sound its horn as it left port delighted Olena Vitalievna, an Odesa resident.

“Finally, life begins to move forward and there are some changes in a positive direction,” she said. “In general, the port should live its own life because Odesa is a port city. We live here. We want everything to work for us, everything to bustle.”

Yet the resumption of the grain shipments came as fighting raged elsewhere in Ukraine, with Russia pressing its offensive in Ukraine’s east while Ukraine tries to reclaim territory in the Russian-occupied south.

Ukraine’s presidential office said at least three civilians were killed and 16 wounded by Russian shelling in the Donetsk region over the past 24 hours.

Donetsk Gov. Pavlo Kyrylenko repeated a call for all residents to evacuate, emphasizing the need to remove about 52,000 children still in the region.

In Kharkiv, two people were wounded by a Russian strike in the morning. One was was struck while waiting for a bus, and the other when a Russian shell exploded near an apartment building.

The southern city of Mykolaiv also faced repeated shelling that ruined a building at a hospital and damaged ambulances, according to regional Gov. Vitaliy Kim. Three civilians were wounded in the Russian shelling elsewhere in the city, he said.

Soon after the grain shipment deal was signed, a Russian missile targeted Odesa. Analysts warned that the continuing fighting could still upend the grain deal.

“The departure of the first vessel doesn’t solve the food crisis; it’s just the first step that could also be the last if Russia decides to continue attacks in the south,” said Volodymyr Sidenko, an expert with the Kyiv-based Razumkov Center think tank.
___
Fraser reported from Ankara, Turkey. Jon Gambrell in Dubai contributed.

We want to hear from you.

Have a story idea or tip? Send it to the KSL NewsRadio team here.

Today’s Top Stories

AP

quit their jobs...
PAUL WISEMAN AP Economics Writer

US added a strong 517,000 jobs in January despite Fed hikes

The Fed is aiming to achieve a "soft landing" — a pullback in the economy that is enough to tame high inflation without triggering recession.
2 days ago
Thousands of fraudulent nursing diplomas  were dispersed in Florida. (Canva)...
Associated Press via Miami Herald

Fake nursing diploma scheme in Florida; 25 arrested

The defendants each face up to 20 years in prison.
3 days ago
Microsoft is cutting 10,000 workers, almost 5% of its workforce, in response to "macroeconomic cond...
MATT O'BRIEN, Associated Press

Job cuts in tech sector spread, Microsoft lays off 10,000

Microsoft said in a regulatory filing Wednesday that had just notified employees of the layoffs, some of which begin immediately.
18 days ago
exxon mobil sign pictured...
SETH BORENSTEIN and CATHY BUSSEWITZ Associated Press

Study: Exxon Mobil accurately predicted warming since 1970s

Exxon said its understanding of climate change evolved over the years and that critics are misunderstanding its earlier research.
24 days ago
FILE - Protesters, supporters of Brazil's former President Jair Bolsonaro, stand on the roof of the...
The Associated Press

Brazil and Jan. 6 in US: Parallel attacks, but not identical

RIO DE JANIERO, Brazil — Enraged protesters broke into government buildings that are the very symbol of their country’s democracy. Driven by conspiracy theories about their candidate’s loss in the last election, they smashed windows, sifted through the desks of lawmakers and trashed the highest offices in the land in a rampage that lasted hours […]
26 days ago
President Joe Biden pictured...
ZEKE MILLER AP White House Correspondent

DOJ reviewing potentially classified docs at Biden center

Special counsel to the president Richard Sauber said “a small number of documents with classified markings” were discovered at the offices of the Penn Biden Center.
27 days ago

Sponsored Articles

Banner with Cervical Cancer Awareness Realistic Ribbon...
Intermountain Health

Five Common Causes of Cervical Cancer – and What You Can Do to Lower Your Risk

January is National Cervical Cancer Awareness month and cancer experts at Intermountain Health are working to educate women about cervical cancer, the tests that can warn women about potential cancer, and the importance of vaccination.
Kid holding a cisco fish at winterfest...
Bear Lake Convention and Visitors Bureau

Get Ready for Fun at the 2023 Bear Lake Monster Winterfest

The Bear Lake Monster Winterfest is an annual weekend event jam-packed full of fun activities the whole family can enjoy. This year the event will be held from January 27-29 at the Utah Bear Lake State Park Marina and Sunrise Resort and Event Center in Garden City, Utah. 
happy friends with sparklers at christmas dinner...
Macey's

15 Easy Christmas Dinner Ideas

We’ve scoured the web for you and narrowed down a few of our favorite Christmas dinner ideas to make your planning easy. Choose from the dishes we’ve highlighted to plan your meal or start brainstorming your own meal plan a couple of weeks before to make sure you have time to shop and prepare.
Spicy Homemade Loaded Taters Tots...
Macey's

5 Game Day Snacks for the Whole Family (with recipes!)

Try these game day snacks to make watching football at home with your family feel like a special occasion. 
Happy joyful smiling casual satisfied woman learning and communicates in sign language online using...
Sorenson

The Best Tools for Deaf and Hard-of-Hearing Workplace Success

Here are some of the best resources to make your workplace work better for Deaf and hard-of-hearing employees.
Team supporters celebrating at a tailgate party...
Macey's

8 Delicious Tailgate Foods That Require Zero Prep Work

In a hurry? These 8 tailgate foods take zero prep work, so you can fuel up and get back to what matters most: getting hyped for your favorite
1st ship carrying Ukrainian grain leaves the port of Odesa